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    Spain’s elections: What’s at stake and what’s the likely outcome?

Spain’s elections: What’s at stake and what’s the likely outcome?

Spain will hold a general election on 28 April. Sebastian Balfour writes that with the issue of Catalan separatism still shaping the national debate, and a new wild card emerging on the right of the party system in the shape of the populist party Vox, the outcome of the elections could be crucial for the future of Spanish politics.

These are volatile times in Spain as the general […]

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    Poroshenko vs Zelensky: Who will win the second round of Ukraine’s presidential election?

Poroshenko vs Zelensky: Who will win the second round of Ukraine’s presidential election?

Ukraine will hold the second round of its presidential election on 21 April, with incumbent Petro Poroshenko facing off against Volodymyr Zelensky. Alexander Tabachnik writes that while most signs point to a victory for Zelensky, the country is unlikely to deviate from its pro-Western course regardless of the result. Despite a difficult socio-economic situation, ineffective institutions and pervasive corruption, the […]

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    European Parliament election projections may be underestimating support for Eurosceptic and Green parties

European Parliament election projections may be underestimating support for Eurosceptic and Green parties

Predicting the outcome of European Parliament elections is an exceptionally difficult task, not only because the vote covers multiple countries, but also because voters may vote differently to the way they would in national elections. Nicolò Fraccaroli and Nils Hernborg present a model that can compensate for deficiencies in European election polling, noting that current election projections could be […]

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    Financial markets vs Brussels: What is the best anchor for policies?

Financial markets vs Brussels: What is the best anchor for policies?

Lorenzo Codogno argues that the economic and financial crisis that started more than ten years ago was not only devastating for the Italian economy, but also jeopardised a key mechanism for achieving political consensus. Brussels’ role as an external anchor for economic policies that are in the common interest but are socially and politically difficult to accept and implement […]

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    The future of ‘Eurorealism’: Prospects for the European Conservatives and Reformists after the May 2019 elections

The future of ‘Eurorealism’: Prospects for the European Conservatives and Reformists after the May 2019 elections

The European Conservatives and Reformists (ECR) accounted for the third largest group of MEPs in the 2014-19 European Parliament. But the long-term prospects for the ECR are unclear, not least because its largest member – the UK’s Conservative Party – will no longer be present following Brexit. Martin Steven explains that despite facing stiff competition from a new group […]

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    Why Erdoğan’s political machine is losing its grip over Turkey

Why Erdoğan’s political machine is losing its grip over Turkey

Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan suffered a significant setback in local elections held at the end of March. Sevinç Bermek writes that the elections highlighted the extent to which Erdoğan and his party are beginning to lose their grip over Turkish politics in the aftermath of the country’s financial and economic crisis.

On 31 March, Turkey held local elections. Current […]

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    Quick take: The EU’s irrational position on the Brexit backstop

Quick take: The EU’s irrational position on the Brexit backstop

The EU would apparently prefer the UK to fall into no deal rather than compromising on the Northern Ireland backstop, writes Simon Witney. The stand-off could end if the EU were prepared to accept a second-best alternative.

The European Union’s position in the Brexit negotiations, if one takes it at face value, is self-evidently irrational. It is remarkable that this […]

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    Does Zuzana Čaputová’s victory signal a new kind of politics in Slovakia?

Does Zuzana Čaputová’s victory signal a new kind of politics in Slovakia?

Zuzana Čaputová emerged as the winner from Slovakia’s presidential election on 30 March. Erika Harris writes that although the election of Čaputová has been viewed as a step away from populist and nationalist politics, the battle for the country’s political future is only just beginning ahead of parliamentary elections due to be held by spring 2020.

Slovakia’s presidential election was […]

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    As the Netherlands gears up for European elections, Mark Rutte faces challenges from both the left and the right

As the Netherlands gears up for European elections, Mark Rutte faces challenges from both the left and the right

The right-wing populist Forum for Democracy won the largest share of the vote in the Netherlands’ provincial elections on 20 March. Simon Otjes writes that with European elections just around the corner, pressure is building on Mark Rutte’s government.

The upcoming European elections in the Netherlands will be the second elections in a row in what is a ‘mid-term’ year […]

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    What Ukraine’s presidential election says about the country’s European future

What Ukraine’s presidential election says about the country’s European future

The story of the first round of Ukraine’s presidential election was the success of comedian Volodymyr Zelensky, who topped the vote and will face off against incumbent President Petro Poroshenko in the second round. Max Bader writes that while much of the international media coverage has portrayed Zelensky’s candidacy as a symptom of an immature political system, the real […]

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    The real meaning of ‘Global Britain’: A Great Escape from the EU

The real meaning of ‘Global Britain’: A Great Escape from the EU

What, really, is ‘Global Britain’? What do its proponents want to achieve with it and how does it differ from Britain’s previous strategies for engaging with the world? Oliver Daddow argues that in casting the EU as a prison, the phrase marks a distinctly Eurosceptical turn in Britain’s engagement with the rest of the world.

Like all things Brexit, Theresa May’s […]

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    The Radovan Karadžić verdict: Closure for Bosnia and Herzegovina at last?

The Radovan Karadžić verdict: Closure for Bosnia and Herzegovina at last?

Radovan Karadžić was sentenced to life in prison on 20 March at the International Criminal Tribunal for the Former Yugoslavia, following a lengthy legal process. Marika Djolai writes that the verdict might potentially signal closure for Bosnia and Herzegovina, but could also lead to further divisions within society.

On 20 March, Radovan Karadžić sat in the courtroom of the International […]

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    Bouteflika’s resignation means Algeria is ready to turn a page… or is it?

Bouteflika’s resignation means Algeria is ready to turn a page… or is it?

After two decades in power, Abdelaziz Bouteflika has announced that he will resign as President of Algeria. Luigi Lonardo explains that despite the announcement, there are signs it may not yet be game over for the country’s regime.

Almost ten years after the Arab uprisings, twenty years after taking power, Algeria’s president Bouteflika announced on Tuesday 2 April that he […]

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    The EP elections: An Italian election in Europe or a European election in Italy?

The EP elections: An Italian election in Europe or a European election in Italy?

The upcoming European Parliament elections in Italy will be a key test for the Five Star Movement and the League as they approach their first year in power. Vincent Della Sala writes that the contest is set to be highly significant not only for Italian domestic politics, but also for Italy’s role in the EU.

For observers of Italian and […]

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    Why the compromise over North Macedonia should offer a lesson for the rest of Europe

Why the compromise over North Macedonia should offer a lesson for the rest of Europe

The decision to change the name of Macedonia to ‘North Macedonia’ brought an end to a protracted bilateral disagreement between the country and Greece. Zoran Nechev and Adnan Ćerimagić write that the experience offers a rare lesson in how the will to compromise and build peaceful cooperation can overcome entrenched disputes.

The Western Balkan region is not an island isolated […]

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    How the EU can prevent an East-West divide developing between its members

How the EU can prevent an East-West divide developing between its members

The EU member states of Central and Eastern Europe find themselves at a crossroads. As Alina Bârgăoanu and Clara Volintiru write, strategic realignments by the EU to cope with various geopolitical challenges could carry the risk of an East-West divide developing between EU states. They argue that any reform efforts pursued at the EU level must be as inclusive […]

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    How did it come to this? Unpicking the UK’s potential options over Brexit

How did it come to this? Unpicking the UK’s potential options over Brexit

A second round of voting on alternative Brexit proposals is due to take place today in the UK’s parliament. James L. Newell writes that many across Europe have been left wondering at how the UK’s political system could end up in such a confused state over Brexit.

The UK parliament has voted against Theresa May’s withdrawal agreement (three times); it has […]

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    From cautious member to bold leader? The Netherlands in the EU after Brexit

From cautious member to bold leader? The Netherlands in the EU after Brexit

The UK’s decision to leave the EU has caused concern in Europe about further defections. Lisa ten Brinke argues Brexit has had the opposite effect – at least in the Netherlands. Despite having leaned on their British partners for support in the past, the country is now ready to rebalance its approach to the EU in the aftermath of […]

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    Evidence from the Netherlands: How the politics of agenda-setting shapes the work of national parliaments

Evidence from the Netherlands: How the politics of agenda-setting shapes the work of national parliaments

The process of setting the agenda in a national parliament is highly important, but despite this, it often takes place behind closed doors and is therefore difficult to account for. Simon Otjes presents evidence from the Netherlands, where agenda-setting is carried out in public. He highlights that the politics of agenda-setting follows the pattern of politics as usual: the […]

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    EU government negotiations and political ‘signals’ to national parliaments

EU government negotiations and political ‘signals’ to national parliaments

When national governments negotiate EU policies, are they influenced by the actions of their national parliaments back home? Drawing on a new study, Sara Hagemann, Stefanie Bailer and Alexander Herzog demonstrate that they are: when national parliaments have formal powers to oversee and restrict the positions of governments, there are significantly higher numbers of opposing votes and formal policy […]

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