Slovenian People's Party

  (Redirected from Slovene People's Party)

The Slovenian People's Party (Slovene: Slovenska ljudska stranka, pronounced [slɔˈʋèːnska ˈljúːtska ˈstráːŋka], Slovene abbreviation SLS [ɛsɛlˈɛ́(ː)s])[10] is a conservative,[3] agrarian,[3][11] Christian-democratic[7][8] political party in Slovenia. Formed in 1988 under the name of Slovenian Peasant Union as the first democratic political organization in Yugoslavia, it changed its name to Slovenian People's Party in 1992. On 15 April 2000 it merged with the Slovene Christian Democrats to form the SLS+SKD Slovenian People's Party, and changed its name in 2001 to Slovenian People's Party.

Slovenian People's Party
Slovenska ljudska stranka
LeaderMarjan Podobnik
Founded12 May 1988
Preceded bySlovene People's Party (historical)
(legal predecessor)
HeadquartersGospodinjska ulica 8, Ljubljana
Youth wingNew Generation of the Slovenian People's Party[1]
Women's wingSlovenian Women's Union at the Slovenian People's Party[2]
Green conservatism[4]
Christian democracy[7][8]
Political positionCentre-right[9]
National affiliationLet's Connect Slovenia
European affiliationEuropean People's Party
European Parliament groupEPP Group
ColoursGreen and blue
National Assembly
0 / 90
European Parliament
1 / 8
26 / 212
Municipal council
218 / 2,750

SLS won seats in the National Parliament in general elections in Slovenia in the years 1992, 1996, 2000, 2004, 2008, 2011,[12] but missed the parliamentary threshold in 2014. SLS won 6.83% of the vote at the early 2011 Slovenian parliamentary election on 4 December 2011, thus gaining 6 seats in the National Assembly.[13] From March 2013 to December 2014, Franc Bogovič led SLS. In the 2014 European Parliamentary elections, SLS got their first seat in the European Parliament with Franc Bogovič being elected member of the European Parliament on the NSi and SLS joint-list. SLS lost their seats in the National parliament for the first time in the general elections on 13 July 2014. In the local elections in October 2014, SLS won among all Slovenian political parties in the number of elected mayors.[14] On 6 December 2014, a new leadership was elected at the SLS Congress in Podčetrtek, Slovenia. The new president of the SLS is Marko Zidanšek. In 2018 Marjan Podobnik was once again elected president.

Establishment and early yearsEdit

The Slovenian People's Party was established in May 1988 under the name of Slovenian Peasant Union (Slovenska kmečka zveza) as the first openly non-Communist political organization in Slovenia and Yugoslavia after 1945. The establishment of the Slovenian Peasant Union is frequently considered one of the crucial events in the Slovenian Spring of 1988. In January 1989, it could register as a party. In the first multi-party election in Slovenia, the Peasant Union ran as a part of the DEMOS coalition and won 11 of the 80 seats in the Slovenian Parliament. The party's name was changed to the current form in 1991,[5] alluding to the pre-war Catholic conservative Slovene People's Party. The renaming of the party caused a controversy with the Slovene Christian Democrats, who considered themselves the official heirs of the pre-war Slovene People's Party, since the Slovene People's Party in exile merged with the Slovene Christian Democrats in 1990.

In 1992, Marjan Podobnik was elected president of the party. Under his leadership, the Slovenian People's Party pursued an agrarian, ethnonationalist and corporatist ideology.[15] In 1992, the founder of the Slovenian Peasant Union Ivan Oman left the party and joined the Slovene Christian Democrats, who were then part of the ruling centrist grand coalition.

Between 1992 and 1996, the Slovene People's Party was, together with the Slovenian National Party, the largest opposition party. Its ideology and policies were marked by a populist shift. In late 1995, representatives of the People's Party called for a referendum to suspend the citizenship of non-ethnic Slovenes. The attempt was stopped by the Constitutional Court.[15]

Ahead of the parliamentary election of 1996, the People's Party formed the Slovenian Spring alliance together with the Slovene Christian Democrats (SKD), that referred to the historical Slovenian People's Party, as well. However the alliance, was disbanded immediately after the elections, when the SLS joined a coalition government with the Liberal Democracy of Slovenia (LDS), while the SKD went into opposition. In April 2000, strains between SLS and the Liberal Democrats led to the former's withdrawal from the coalition. In early May, SLS, SKD and SDS elected Christian democrat Andrej Bajuk prime minister instead.[5]


On 15 April 2000, the Slovene Christian Democrats merged into the Slovenian People's Party,[6] and the abbreviation was temporarily changed to SLS+SKD to signify both predecessors. However, as early as in July of the same year rifts emerged, based on the question of a new electoral system. Therefore, Prime Minister Bajuk, Lojze Peterle, and other centrist Christian democrats left the unified party to form New Slovenia – Christian People's Party (NSi) in August. The remaining People's Party performed poorly in the election in October 2000, but became part of the Liberal-led coalition government of Janez Drnovšek.[5]

After 2004Edit

In the legislative election on 3 October 2004, the party won 6.8% of the popular vote and 7 out of 90 seats. Led by Janez Podobnik, the brother of former chairman Marjan Podobnik, the party entered in the centre-right government of Janez Janša.

In 2007, the mayor of Celje Bojan Šrot replaced Marjan Podobnik as president of the party. This change in leadership coincided with a policy shift. Upon his election, Šrot announced he wanted to transform the SLS in the largest centre-right party in Slovenia, thus challenging the primacy of Janez Janša's Slovenian Democratic Party. Šrot started criticizing some of the neo-liberal reforms launched by Janša's government, and especially Janša's "anti-tycoon" policies, aimed against concentration of wealth in the hands of a small group of executive managers of privatized former state-owned firms. One of these "tycoons" was also Boško Šrot, Bojan Šrot's brother, and CEO of the Laško Brewery company.

In the 2008 election the SLS ran a joint list with the Youth Party of Slovenia. In the electoral campaign, the party tried to distance itself from its former coalition allies. The joint list secured only 5 seats and 5.2% of the vote, a loss of 2 compared to the results of the SLS in 2004.[16]

In 2009, Radovan Žerjav, former Minister of Transport in Janez Janša government, replaced Šrot as the leader of the party. Under his leadership, the SLS adopted a more moderate rhetorics. After 11 years in power, the party stayed in opposition, trying to forge an image of a constructive opposition party, supporting moderate conservative policies.

In the 2011 election, the SLS increased its support both in number of voters and in percentage, thus reversing the falling trend for the first time after the 2000 election.

In the 2014 European election, SLS ran in a joint electoral list with New Slovenia, which received 16.56% of the vote and came in second place, returning 2 MEPs.[17]

The party received 3.98% of the vote in the Slovenian parliamentary election on 13 July 2014, narrowly missing the 4% threshold for representation in the parliament. In 2018 it received only 2.62% of the votes and next day the leader Marko Zidanšek resigned. Party decided that Primož Jelševar would lead the party until the next regular party congress.[18]

Parliamentary representation:

Presidents of the partyEdit

Other prominent membersEdit


  1. ^ "Nova generacija SLS". Retrieved 15 October 2021.
  2. ^ "Slovenska ženska zveza pri SLS". Retrieved 15 October 2021.
  3. ^ a b c Susanne Jungerstam-Mulders (2006). Post-Communist EU Member States: Parties And Party Systems. Ashgate Publishing, Ltd. pp. 215–. ISBN 978-0-7546-4712-6. Retrieved 24 July 2013.
  4. ^ "Temeljna načela SLS". Retrieved 3 February 2022.
  5. ^ a b c d Day, Alan John; East, Roger; Thomas, Richard (2002), "Slovenian People's Party", A political and economic dictionary of Eastern Europe, Routledge, p. 533, ISBN 9780203403747, retrieved 14 November 2011
  6. ^ a b Zajc, Drago; Boh, Tomaž (2004), "Slovenia", The handbook of political change in Eastern Europe, Edward Elgar Publishing, p. 351, ISBN 9781840648546, retrieved 9 December 2011
  7. ^ a b Sabrina P. Ramet (18 February 2010). Central and Southeast European Politics since 1989. Cambridge University Press. pp. 80–. ISBN 978-1-139-48750-4.
  8. ^ a b José Magone (26 August 2010). Contemporary European Politics: A Comparative Introduction. Routledge. pp. 457–. ISBN 978-0-203-84639-1. Retrieved 19 July 2013.
  9. ^ Fink-Hafner, Danica (2006), "Slovenia: Between Bipolarity and Broad Coalition-Building", Post-Communist EU Member States: Parties and Party Systems, Ashgate, p. 211, ISBN 9780754647126
  10. ^ "Slovenski pravopis 2001: SLS".
  11. ^ Igor Guardiancich (21 August 2012). Pension Reforms in Central, Eastern and Southeastern Europe: From Post-Socialist Transition to the Global Financial Crisis. Routledge. pp. 194–. ISBN 978-1-136-22595-6.
  12. ^ "Republic of Slovenia Parliamentary Elections Archive". State Election Commission. Retrieved 7 January 2015.
  13. ^ "Republic of Slovenia Early Elections for Deputies to the National Assembly 2011". National Electoral Commission. Archived from the original on 1 August 2012. Retrieved 16 December 2011.
  14. ^ "Republic of Slovenia Local Elections 2014 Results". State Election Commission. Retrieved 7 January 2015.
  15. ^ a b Rizman, Rudolf M. (1999), "Radical Right Politics in Slovenia", The radical right in Central and Eastern Europe since 1989, Penn State Press, pp. 155–158, ISBN 0271043792, retrieved 17 November 2011
  16. ^ Nordsieck, Wolfram (2018). "Slovenia". Parties and Elections in Europe.
  17. ^ "EU volitve 2014 / 18".
  18. ^ "Do kongresa SLS-a bo stranko vodil podpredsednik Primož Jelševar". Prvi interaktivni multimedijski portal, MMC RTV Slovenija. Retrieved 2018-06-13.

External linksEdit