Election day in Croatia

Today Croatia has presidential elections. If public opinion surveys are to be believed, no surprises are expected, and the current president Stjepan Mesic should have little difficulty getting reelected. Polls show him far ahead of his nearest rival, HDZ candidate Jadranka Kosor, who promises not to drink coffee or tell jokes if she is elected. In any case, I will be following events as they are recounted to the world by Dragan Antulov.

Update: The elections have not passed without at least one bizarre incident. Apparently in the very pleasant city of Split, an election observer from the non-governmental organization GONG was smacked in the head by a drunken Boris Dvornik, who was once a great actor, but has perhaps found other interests.

Update2: More detail on Boris Dvornik's introduction of violence into the election cycle from Drax. Apparently the incident arose from a gap in perceptions, in which Mr Dvornik thought the election observer was a hot young woman, whereas she thought he was a nasty old drunk.

Update3: Actual real news! Poll results conflict as to whether Mesic will succeed in getting over 50%, thereby securing election without going into another round. But results appear to agree that second place will not be taken by Jadranka Kosor (whose HDZ is the party of the current prime minister Ivo Sanader, and is also well known for a couple of other reasons) but by Boris Miksic, a former tennis champion and rich guy from Minnesota who financed his own campaign. Reports from Drax, from Index, and from B92.

Update4: Now the speculation is focused on whether votes from outside the country might change the result. If the "diaspora votes" (don't say it, I know) are significantly different from the results so far, this could either 1) put Mesic below 50%, which would force a runoff election, or 2) put Kosor ahead of Miksic. I do not have a guess on the likelihood of either, except that if either one happens then the likelihood is increased for possibility 3) that a change of the outcome as a result of the "diaspora vote" would lead to greater pressure to eliminate the "diaspora vote."

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