General Election Prognostications

Pundit Olympics.

General Election Prognostications

Photo: The National Assembly. Credit: The National Assembly.

With the election to select the National Assembly 국회 just two days away, Weekly Kyunghyang 주간경향 surveyed eight pollsters and analysts for their predictions, and presented its own views based on the available polls published before the blackout period. 

Kyunghyang’s own analysis predicted a massive landslide win for the Democratic Party 민주당, with the main opposition netting 185 seats to a paltry 92 for the currently ruling People Power Party 국민의힘. Former Justice Minister Cho Kuk 조국’s Rebuilding Korea Party 조국혁신당 will be the largest third party with 15 seats. Adding up all minor progressive parties and independent candidates, Kyunghyang expects the liberal bloc to take 201 seats - a historic supermajority that will allow liberals to override presidential vetoes, vote to impeach the president, and call for constitutional revisions.

An Il-won 안일원, head of Research View 리서치뷰, a political consultancy, largely agreed with Kyunghyang’s analysis, also predicting a supermajority. Others, such as Kim Neung-gu 김능구 of PoliNews 폴리뉴스, a specialty newspaper, and Lee Gang-yun 이강윤, head of KSOI, a polling house, also expected a strong performance for liberals, although they projected around 170 seats for the Democrats and cautioned that a 200-seat supermajority will be exceedingly difficult to achieve.

Several analysts, such as columnist Kim Seong-sun 김성순 and author Choi Byeong-cheon 최병천, revised their projections for the Democratic Party from a plurality to an outright majority. Park-Shin Yeong-cheol 박신영철, of political consultancy The Change Plan 더 체인지 플랜, flipped his original projection of PPP 148 seats, Dem 135 seats to Dem 145 seats and PPP 136 seats. Analysts who changed their predictions cited the rise of the Rebuilding Korea Party as the reason.

Still others maintained that the conservatives will eke out a win. Author Eom Gyeong-yeong 엄경영 predicts that the PPP will win 151 seats, arguing that the ruling party has been rebounding since early April. Analyst Kim Jang-su 김장수, formerly of the PPP-affiliated thinktank The Yeouido Institute 여의도연구원, also predicted a PPP plurality with 145 seats, with the Democratic Party taking 138.

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