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Lithuania to hold presidential elections

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Lithuania to hold presidential elections

Lithuania to hold presidential elections

Lithuania will hold its presidential election today.

The incumbent president, Gitanas Nausėda, is seeking a second term after being in office since 2019. The most prominent of Nausėda’s opponents is incumbent Prime Minister Ingrida Šimonytė, of the conservative TS-LKD Party. Though Nausėda is an independent, he has been backed by the center-left LSDP Party. If no candidate relieves an absolute majority of the vote, a second round of voting will take place in two weeks.

National security has taken a central role during this campaign, as Lithuania and its Baltic neighbors have increased their military budgets following the 2022 Russian invasion of Ukraine. This election will likely serve as a referendum on Nausėda’s policies regarding military conscription, military spending, and relations with both Russia and the West. As general support for increased military spending remains high, Lithuania will likely remain on this course no matter the victor.

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Though Nausėda has faced much criticism for his past business connections with Russia, many agree with his support for Ukraine and his dedication to preserving Lithuania’s role in the NATO alliance. The LSDP remains the most popular political party in Lithuania, and Nausėda is favored to win this election. His reelection would likely signal sustained support for Western alliances in the Baltics, as apprehension in the region has grown over Russian military actions.

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