Topolánek, Mirek

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Mirek Topolánek (mēr´Ĭk tō´pōlänĕk), 1956–, Czech politician, grad. Brno Univ. of Technology (1987). He worked as a mining engineer and briefly had his own business before his election (1996) to the Czech senate, where he served until 2004. A member of the conservative Civic Democratic Party (ODS), he was its head from 2002 to 2010. Elected a parliamentary deputy in 2006, he became prime minister of an ODS minority government, but he did not win a confidence vote until forming a three-party coalition in 2007. A blunt-spoken, sometime controversial leader, Topánek was a strong supporter of free-market capitalism and of NATO and close ties with the United States. In 2009 his government fell; Topolánek resigned his seat several months later.