Runoff parliamentary elections on October 30 gave the Georgian Dream party an outright majority in Georgia’s incoming parliament, allowing it to effectively override any opposition.
“Today begins a whole new phase of progress and we are ready to take decisive steps to take the country forward,” Prime Minister Giorgi Kvirikashvili, chairperson of the Georgian Dream, said in a televised statement on October 31.
The Georgian Dream, which has governed Georgia since 2012, now controls 76 percent of the 150-member parliament. Its candidates picked up 48 of the 50 districts that had produced no clear winners in the first round of voting on October 8 and which were recontested in this runoff.
Failing to win any seats in the runoff votes, the party of former President Mikheil Saakashvili, the staunchly pro-Western United National Movement (UNM), took a distant second place with just 27 parliamentary seats, based on preliminary results.
The UNM accepted the results philosophically. “What doesn’t kill you makes you stronger,” the UNM’s chairperson, Davit Bakradze, told reporters.
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Giorgi Lomsadze is a freelance journalist and a frequent contributor to EurasiaNet.org's Tamada Tales blog.