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Croatian People's Party-Liberal Democrats

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Title: Croatian People's Party-Liberal Democrats  
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Subject: HNS, Liberalism by country, Liberalism in Croatia, Vesna Pusić, Recognition of same-sex unions in Croatia, LGBT rights in Croatia, Radimir Čačić, Zagreb Pride
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Croatian People's Party-Liberal Democrats

"Croatian People's Party" redirects here. For historic parties, see People's Party (Kingdom of Croatia) and Croatian People's Party (1919).
Croatian People's Party – Liberal Democrats
Hrvatska narodna stranka - Liberalni demokrati
President Vesna Pusić
Secretary-General Srećko Ferenčak
Founder Savka Dabčević-Kučar
Vice President Ivan Vrdoljak
Founded 13 October 1990 (1990-10-13)
Headquarters Zagreb, Croatia
Ideology Liberalism,[1]
Social liberalism
Political position Centre
National affiliation Kukuriku coalition
International affiliation Liberal International (observer)
European affiliation Alliance of Liberals and Democrats for Europe Party
European Parliament group Alliance of Liberals and Democrats for Europe
Colors Orange
Sabor Template:Infobox political party/seats
European Parliament Template:Infobox political party/seats
Politics of Croatia
Political parties

The Croatian People's Party – Liberal Democrats (Croatian: Hrvatska narodna stranka – liberalni demokrati, HNS) is a liberal[1] political party in Croatia.

HNS currently forms a parliamentary club with 15[2] members in Croatian Parliament, 14 elected in regular districts and one representative elected on a national minority list, therefore are the third largest political party in Croatia. The party is an observing member of the Liberal International and a full member of the Alliance of Liberals and Democrats for Europe Party. HNS is currently led by Vesna Pusić.


The People's Party in Croatia was originally formed in the 19th century during the period of Croatian romantic nationalism. The Croatian People's Party describes the events of the Illyrian movement since 1835 as its history.[3]

During Communism in the second Yugoslavia, the liberal leaders of the League of Communists of Croatia were Savka Dabčević-Kučar and Miko Tripalo, who participated in the Croatian Spring of 1971.

Modern party

The modern Croatian People's Party was formed in late 1990 by members of the Coalition of People's Accord (Croatian: Koalicija narodnog sporazuma) which had participated on the first multi-party election of 1990, led by Savka Dabčević-Kučar, Miko Tripalo, Dragutin Haramija and others.

The HNS remained a small opposition party. In the 1992 election they won 6.7% of the vote and attained 6 seats in the Croatian Parliament. In 1994, construction entrepreneur Radimir Čačić became party chairman. In the 1995 election they won 2 seats as part of an election alliance.

In the January 2000 election they formed a four-party coalition with HSS, LS and IDS, which together won 25 seats in the Parliament, two of whom were HNS representatives. As a result, the party participated in the 2000–2003 government of Ivica Račan through the minister of public works, construction and reconstruction Radimir Čačić. A few weeks later, the coalition's candidate and HNS member Stjepan Mesić was elected President of the Republic.

Also in 2000, HNS elected a new party chair, sociologist Vesna Pusić.

In the November 2003 elections, their alliance with the Alliance of Primorje-Gorski Kotar and the Slavonia-Baranja Croatian Party won 8% of the vote and 11 out of 151 seats, 10 of them HNS representatives. However, despite significantly improved results, the party moved to the opposition.

A second element of today's People's Party, the Party of Liberal Democrats or Libra, originated in time of the Račan government when in 2002 Dražen Budiša, the leader of the Croatian Social Liberal Party (HSLS), pulled out of the coalition. Ten members of parliament from Budiša's party, led by Jozo Radoš, refused to bring down the government and instead split from the HSLS, forming Libra, the Party of Liberal Democrats. That party won 3 seats in the 2003 election. On 6 February 2005, most of the 1,250 representatives of HNS on its seventh convention voted to merge with Libra as the Croatian People's Party – Liberal Democrats. The total number of parliamentary seats for the party increased to 13.

In the November 2007 elections the party ran on its own and got around 7% of the vote and 7 seats in the Croatian Sabor. It remained in the opposition. Since then, two representatives in Sabor, Dragutin Lesar and Zlatko Horvat, left the party.

In April 2008 Radimir Čačić was elected as party chair after defeating Dragutin Lesar, and then again in March 2012.

Election history


The following is a summary of the party's results in legislative elections for the Croatian parliament. The "Total votes" and "Percentage" columns include sums of votes won by pre-election coalitions HNS had been part of and the "Total seats" column includes sums of seats won by HNS in election constituencies plus representatives of ethnic minorities affiliated with HNS.

Election In coalition with Votes won Percentage Seats won Change
(Coalition totals) (HNS only)
August 1992 None 176,214 6.67 6 / 138
October 1995 HSSIDSHKDUSBHS 441,390 18.26 2 / 127 –4
January 2000 HSSIDSLSASH 432,527 14.70 2 / 151 ±0
November 2003 PGSSBHS 198,781 8.00 10 / 151 +8
November 2007 None 168,440 6.80 7 / 153 –3
December 2011 SDP–IDS–HSU 958,312 40.00 14 / 151 +7


The following is a list of presidential candidates who either ran as HNS members or were endorsed by HNS.

  • 1992Savka Dabčević-Kučar (HNS) (Finished third, with 6.02% of votes in the first round)
  • 2000Stjepan Mesić (HNS) (Finished first with 41.11% of votes in the first round and won the run-off with 56.01% of votes)
  • 2005 – Stjepan Mesić (Independent) (Finished first with 48,92% of votes in the first round and won the run-off with 65,93% of votes)
  • 2009–10Vesna Pusić (HNS) (Finished fifth with 7.25% of votes in the first round)

See also


External links

  • (Croatian)
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