Caputova in Parliament: Overall Level of Political Discourse at All-time Low

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Slovak Parliament (stock photo by TASR)

Bratislava, September 28 (TASR) – The overall level of political discourse in the country has dropped to an all-time low, President Zuzana Caputova stated in Parliament on Tuesday when providing her annual State of the Republic Address.

Caputova addressed this comment to both the coalition and the opposition, pointing to the negative impacts that ensue from the use of lies, vulgarisms and personal attacks.

The president stressed the need for stability and cooperation, mentioning this in the context of the challenges that Slovakia will face in the near future.

At the same time, the president reminded lawmakers of their responsibility towards the public.

“The crisis has been increasing the pressure on all of us, and yet we must live together, but this isn’t possible without mutual respect and understanding,” said Caputova, stressing that this especially concerns the governing coalition. The president stated that the coalition parties should demonstrate unity and a will to cooperate, as internal disputes have deepened public disillusionment.

Caputova remarked that this concerns the opposition as well, as it’s been co-creating the level of culture in political discourse and so has been co-responsible for dampening cohesion among the public.

“The overall political discourse has dropped to a never-before-seen level. It’s naive to think that [what is said in Parliament] stays in Parliament or that verbal attacks will affect only the intended recipient. No, we form our society together, and every expression of hatred is a message to the people who’ve supported us that our personal disputes mean more to us than the real problems of the public,” stated the president.

Caputova went on to state that Slovakia is a “damaged” country that needs to cope with the global health crisis and further challenges. “We, the political leadership of this country, have a responsibility towards all people to perform our roles at a level that will be comparable to the best governed countries in the world. We need mutual respect and stability for this,” she said, adding that Slovakia “desperately needs stability”, clear and unified leadership, and peace based on truth, justice, pragmatism and solidarity.