1958 Greek legislative election

Parliamentary elections were held in Greece on 11 May 1958.[1] The result was a second consecutive victory for Constantine Karamanlis and his National Radical Union party, which won 171 of the 300 seats in Parliament.

1958 Greek legislative election

← 1956 11 May 1958 1961 →

All 300 seats in the Hellenic Parliament
151 seats were needed for a majority
  First party Second party Third party
  KaramanlisNatsinasAgora crop.jpg Noimage.png Sophoklis Venizelos, 1921.png
Leader Konstantinos Karamanlis Ioannis Passalidis Sofoklis Venizelos
Party ERE EDA Liberal
Leader since 1955 1951 1948
Last election 165 seats, 47.38% Ran with FIDE 132 seats, 48.15%
Seats won 171 79 36
Seat change Increase 6 Ran with FIDE Decrease 96
Popular vote 1,583,885 939,902 795,445
Percentage 41.16% 24.42% 20.67%
Swing Decrease 6.22% Ran with FIDE Decrease 27.48%

Prime Minister before election

Konstantinos Karamanlis
ERE

Subsequent Prime Minister

Konstantinos Karamanlis
ERE

BackgroundEdit

Karamanlis took the decision to call for early elections, after some of the most prominent members of the National Radical Union defected from the party, including George Rallis and Panagis Papaligouras [el]. Although Karamanlis could have a parliamentary majority, he preferred to go for elections, in order to achieve a renewed public support.

The pretext of the defection was a new electoral law that Karamanlis passed. Rallis was opposed to the law, thinking that it is going to be extremely favorable for EDA, a party believed to be linked with the then-banned Communist Party of Greece.

The outcome of the results proved that Rallis' "fears" were justified. EDA became the second biggest party, outvoting a divided centre.

Just after the elections Karamanlis formed a new government, taking back in his party the defectors.

ResultsEdit

Party Votes % Seats +/–
National Radical Union 1,583,885 41.2 171 +6
United Democratic Left 939,902 24.4 79
Liberal Party 795,445 20.7 36
Progressive Agricultural Democratic Union 408,787 10.6 10 New
Union of Populars 113,358 2.9 4 New
List of Independents 4,009 0.1 0 –2
Independents 2,339 0.1 0 –1
Invalid/blank votes 16,197
Total 3,863,922 100 300 0
Registered voters/turnout 5,119,148 75.5
Source: Nohlen & Stöver
Popular vote
ERE
41.16%
EDA
24.43%
KF
20.67%
PADE
10.62%
EL
2.95%
Others
0.16%
Parliament seats
ERE
57.00%
EDA
26.33%
KF
12.00%
PADE
3.33%
EL
1.33%

AftermathEdit

The unexpected rise of EDA, barely nine years after the end of the Greek Civil War, sent alarms through the right-wing establishment, and measures were taken to combat the emergent "communist threat", including the division of the large urban electoral districts of Athens, Piraeus and Thessaloniki so that the left-voting areas would be separated (forming the Athens B, Piraeus B, etc. constituencies), as well as the establishment of a dedicated domestic security agency, the General Directorate of National Security.

ReferencesEdit

  1. ^ Dieter Nohlen & Philip Stöver (2010) Elections in Europe: A data handbook, p830 ISBN 978-3-8329-5609-7