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Slovenia - Politics

Prime Ministerpartyterm
Lojze Peterle SKD 19901992
Dr Janez Drnovek LDS 19922000
Dr Andrej Bajuk SLS+SKD SPP 2000
Dr Janez Drnovek LDS 20002002
Anton Rop LDS 20022004
Janez Jana SDS 20042008
Borut Pahor SD 20082012
Janez Jana SDS10 Feb 2012 27 Feb 2013
Alenka Bratusek 27 Feb 2013 03 May 2014
Miro Cerar SMC18 Sep 201414 Mar 2018

Slovenia, though making strides to expand its world view, is a relatively parochial, homogenous society. Religious and political extremism are very rare in Slovenia. With a homogeneous population of only two million people, Slovenian society and politics function on the basis of strong social networks that foster a culture of compromise, consensus, and centrism.

Nevertheless, the same factors that work to make Slovenia a tightly-knit community also create insularity and suspicion towards foreigners, which at times borders on intolerance and xenophobia. The latter is manifested most noticeably with regards to the 0.2 percent of the population (roughly 3,500 people) who are Roma and, to a far lesser degree, the 2.4 percent of the population who are Muslim (roughly 50,000 people). Sitting on the crossroads of Western and Muslim civilization, Slovenia's Muslim community is well integrated into Slovenian society and has exhibited no overt manifestations of religious extremism.

At the end of March 1989, a general election with multiple candidates for president of the presidency of the Socialist Federal Republic of Yugoslavia was held, albeit still organised by the Socialist Association of the Working People. The outcome was that the surprise winner, running against Marko Bulc, the governments official candidate, was one Janez Drnovek, a relatively unknown public figure at the time. In order to ensure increased sovereignty for the Republic, the Slovenian assembly adopted several amendments in September 1989. The Slovenian constitutional amendments were met by extreme opposition from the federal authorities and the leadership of the Yugoslav Communist Party, going to great lengths to prevent implementation.

Ever since Slovenia achieved independence, Slovenian politics (governments) have often been reproached for not being able to meet policy challenges. Frequent generous promises and commitments reflect the lack of clear priorities in Slovenian politics.

Though largely homogeneous and prosperous, Slovenia has not fully addressed the need to modernize its socialist-era economy and welfare system. Stark internal differences and festering regional animosities, many dating to World War II and earlier, have made consensus elusive and fueled political polarization. Slovenes still must develop a sensitivity about human rights which they lack. Observers attribute this to years of socialist rule, which assumed all people's rights were ensured by the state which guaranteed jobs, healthcare etc.

Slovenia is regarded today as a free country and consolidated democracy, with some problems with corruption, independent media, and independent judiciary. Since its independence in 1991, Slovenia has put in place democratic institutions of state organization, undergone major capital rearrangements, and achieved both of the starting objectives of new international involvement by entering the EU and NATO. On 01 January 2007, Slovenia was the first among former socialist countries to take on the common European currency.

Slovenia has been subject to highly varying assessments during the construction of its democratic political system; it has been acknowledged as a ripe democracy, complete democracy, or, alternatively, apparent or virtual democracy. The more negative assessments of the Slovenian political system are related to the persistence of authoritarian behavior patterns and manipulation of democratic institutions that have found its way into the structures of political parties.

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