TOP 09 is preparing for its congress. Its chairperson, Markéta Pekarová Adamová, will continue to be its chairperson even after the weekend, even if she may not be elected with such strength as two years ago.
Nevertheless, her position is currently unshakable – after many years in the opposition, she led the “top” into the government, albeit as part of the Spolu coalition.
After all, she comes to the Diet with fresh loot – she managed to negotiate a coalition together for the European elections. It was not a simple matter. A significant part of the ODS – including the leader of the entire candidate, Alexandra Vondra – was against it.
“And it is already clear that in two years we will once again be fighting for the character of the country. About what kind of government will be here after 2025. We only have a populist and extremist opposition in the Chamber of Deputies. The Diet should clearly define a policy that will not allow such forces to come to power,” says Pekarová Adamová before the Diet.
TOP 09 wants to present itself as a party that offers modern solutions focused on the future.
Together for the European elections
“We do not nostalgically idealize the times long past, we do not treat them as a model for the present, but we realize that we are dealing with the future now. That our living comfort depends on how quickly and qualitatively we reform and modernize,” he says.
It will be especially interesting to watch the movements at lower positions in the party hierarchy. It is already clear that Pekarová’s first vice-chairman, Senator Tomáš Czernin, is leaving. He seconded her in this position since her first election in 2019, but he was an invisible politician to the wider public.
The favorite for his post is the current Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Health Vlastimil Válek. The chairman of the parliamentary faction, Jan Jakob, is also in the game, but he is ready to step down in favor of Válek, whose choice is more strategic.
Battles of Vlastimil Válk
TOP 09 currently has no party functionary in the leadership of Fial’s cabinet. Markéta Pekarová Adamová heads the House of Representatives, the serving First Vice-President Czernin sits in the leadership of the Senate. And Vlastimil Válek is the only deputy prime minister without strong party support – the others are even chairmen of coalition parties.
So it is no coincidence that the invisible nobleman is replaced by a chatty university professor. The “founding fathers” gave the party a certain exclusivity and social status. And the professor of medicine is the embodiment of the idea of a “football politician”, who is respected enough and at the same time can nonchalantly roast his opponent with a catchy remark.
Party members are anxiously waiting to see what they will do and say to Pekarová’s predecessor Adamová, with whom she does not have very good relations.
Former chairmen of TOP 09
The main tension is around Miroslav Kalouska, who, as the founding father, does not spare the current management. On the social network X, he often blames him for resigning from the main reason why he founded TOP 09 – budgetary responsibility. Now, just before the parliament, he limits his output so as not to look like a classic disgraced ex-president cursing his successors.
“I am not a delegate to the Diet, but I am invited as the former chairman and founder of the party. So I’m going there as a guest,” says Kalousek on the phone, putting special emphasis on the word “guest”.
Where to with Pospíšil?
There is also slight nervousness surrounding the future of Jiří Pospíšil, another one of the former TOP 09 leaders. He is speculated to be the top two in the European elections next year, which means roughly seventh place on the joint candidate of the Spolu coalition.
Pospíšil himself told Seznam Zprávám that it is “less likely” that he would run, but that the primaries in TOP 09 have not started yet, so nothing – not even he himself – has been decided yet.
Unlike Kalouska, however, he also has a second iron in the fire – he is nominated to the party leadership for the post of vice-chairman. “It’s such a wild card, I’ll make a decision on the spot,” he went on to describe his attitude. At the same time, he said that he himself does not undertake anything in the matter of being elected to the leadership of TOP 09, does not travel to conferences or lobby in any other way.
It can be expected that the current boss will try to prevent Pospíšil, both in terms of European and internal party ambitions.
However, according to Seznam Zpráv information, TOP 09 commissioned a survey of how its politicians stand in connection with the European elections. To the displeasure of Pospíšil’s opponents, it turned out that he is better known and more trustworthy than the number one for TOP 09, Luděk Niedermayer.