Sunday, September 13, 2009

Who will be the next Swiss Federal Councillor - 2nd update

The elections for the successor of Swiss Federal Councilor (Bundesrat) Pascal Couchepin will be this Wednesday, Sept 16. Here is a new update on the trend prediction, as of this evening, Sunday Sept 13.
Again the disclaimer is that it is not the Swiss population who is electing the Bundesrat, but the 248 members of parliament, which of course makes it much harder to predict the outcome. Nevertheless, here first the general trend for the currently three official candidates, Christian Lüscher, Didier Burkhalter, and Urs Schwaller, and three other candidates based on the "electoral votes", i.e. Web Betweenness of the Swiss German bloggers for the last three days.

Christian Lüscher lost his lead, Urs Schwaller is the leader, Dominique de Buman is number two. This is based on the accumulated coolhunting in the German language blogosphere over the last week:,, and are the most influential Blogs - the kingmakers - to promote the candidates.

Doing a combined coolhunting for the German language Web and blogosphere and adding the French Swiss (by including tracking the prominence of Web sites talking about "conseil federal urs schwaller", etc.) gives a slightly different picture:

Now Dominque de Buman is the leader (betweenness 0.31), ahead of Urs Schwaller (betweenness 0.29). It does not look good for the two candidates from FDP, Lüscher and Burkhalter.
I also included the social Web networks for the queries "Nachfolge Bundesrat Couchepin Ständerat" und "Nachfolge Bundesrat Couchepin Nationalrat" to accomodate for the fact that Ständerat and Nationalrat (the Swiss National Assembly) will elect the "Nachfolger" (successor) of the Bundesrat. One side result is that the Ständerat (betweenness 0.04) has more influence on the election of the successor than the Nationalrat (betweenness 0.03) - at least on the Web.

Here is also the content map of the German language blogs about the four main candidates Schwaller, Buman, Lüscher, and Burkhalter. The size of each square denotes the betwenness of a term.

The term cloud is nicely split into an FDP and a CVP side. What stands out is that Christian Lüscher is haunted by his lawyer colleague Poncet who is representing Gadaffi in his dispute with Switzerland. On the other hand it seems that the FDP has a slightly larger claim (higher betweenness) on the vacant seat than the CVP. Blocher, another politician from the right-wing SVP also comes out prominently as an influencer, together with FDP president Pelli. There is speculation about Bundesrat Merz stepping down soon also.

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