No post-vote change in Latvian party popularity

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According to the first SKDS and Latvian Television survey released after the 13th Saeima elections, most political parties have maintained their previous party ratings, with the Greens and Farmers Union (ZZS) seeing the largest drop in support.

Harmony remains the most popular political party with 19.2 percent support in October, two percentage points up from September.

The second most popular party is KPV LV with 11.5 percent support, followed by the New Conservative Party - 10.1 percent, and For Development/For - 8.9 percent.

The National Alliance is the fifth most popular party with 8.4 percent support, the Union of Greens and Farmers with 5 percent and New Unity with 4.4 percent.

In September, the National Alliance's popularity was at 6.9 percent, the Union of Greens and Farmers at 9.4 percent, but New Unity - at 3.8 percent.

The eighth most popular political party in Latvia in October was the Alliance of Regions - 4.2 percent, the Progressives with 1.7 percent, and the Latvian Union of Russians - 1.4 percent.

In other party news, outgoing Finance Minister Dana Reizniece-Ozola announced November 3 she is leaving the "For Latvia and Ventspils" sub-party and joining the Latvian Farmers Union (LZS) instead.

Both parties operate within the ZZS umbrella, but the Ventspils party has long been associated with its leader, controversial Ventspils mayor Aivars Lembergs, who is regarded as one of the Latvia's chief oligarchs.

Following the disappointing showing of ZZS at the October 6 poll, rumors are rife that Reiznice-Ozola may take a new leading role in the party, possibly replacing long-time parliamentary leader Augusts Brigmanis.


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