Elections, party politics and government across Europe

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    Economic competition between native workers and migrants has a clear link with support for the radical right among French voters

Economic competition between native workers and migrants has a clear link with support for the radical right among French voters

Marine Le Pen has targeted the French local elections on 15 and 22 March as a way to build momentum ahead of the next French presidential election in 2022. Drawing on a new study, Diane Bolet writes on the role of economic competition between native workers and immigrants in determining support for Le Pen’s National Rally (formerly the Front […]

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Five takeaways from Slovakia’s parliamentary elections

Slovakia held parliamentary elections on 29 February. The election saw Smer-SD, which has been in power since 2012, suffer a significant drop in support, slipping to second place behind the opposition Ordinary People party. Michael Rossi presents five key takeaways from the results.

Two years after the murder of Slovak investigative journalist Ján Kuciak and his fiancée Martina Kusnirova that […]

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    Spain and the populist radical right: Will Vox become a permanent feature of the Spanish party system?

Spain and the populist radical right: Will Vox become a permanent feature of the Spanish party system?

Vox won the third largest share of the vote in Spain’s general election in November. But is the success of the party a temporary phenomenon or a sign that populist radical right parties are destined to become a permanent feature of the Spanish party system? Lisa Zanotti and José Rama write that while political resentment and the Catalan independence […]

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    Book Review: Cypriot Nationalisms in Context: History, Identity and Politics edited by Thekla Kyritsi and Nikos Christofis

Book Review: Cypriot Nationalisms in Context: History, Identity and Politics edited by Thekla Kyritsi and Nikos Christofis

In Cypriot Nationalisms in Context: History, Identity and Politics, Thekla Kyritsi and Nikos Christofis bring together contributors to examine historical and contemporary moments of nationalism in Cyprus and their attendant narratives through an interdisciplinary perspective. The book will be useful to academics and students of modern Cyprus and shines when exploring the lesser-studied new and traditional communities of Cyprus, yet greater attention to this […]

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    The populist citizen is a dissatisfied democrat, but a democrat nonetheless

The populist citizen is a dissatisfied democrat, but a democrat nonetheless

Are populist attitudes compatible with the principles of democracy? Drawing on a new study, Cristóbal Rovira Kaltwasser and Steven M. Van Hauwaert explain there is evidence populist citizens across the world adhere to democracy as a political system, but are disgruntled with how the democratic regime functions in their own country. Rather than conceiving of those who support populist […]

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Slow economic growth is a sign of success

A country’s growth rate is often viewed as a key indicator of its economic health, but should this be the case? Dietrich Vollrath writes that growth is currently slower in many developed states because of several policy successes which have led to lower fertility rates and shifted spending away from goods and toward services.

We’re accustomed to looking at the growth […]

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    Sinn Féin is poised to recast Ireland’s political dynamic

Sinn Féin is poised to recast Ireland’s political dynamic

Sinn Féin experienced a late surge in popularity to secure the largest share of the vote in the Irish general election on 8 February. John Ryan writes that the party’s success has redrawn Ireland’s political landscape, leaving the country’s two established parties of power, Fianna Fáil and Fine Gael, in a difficult position.

The Republic of Ireland’s general election took […]

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    Thomas Piketty: “The current economic system is not working when it comes to solving inequality”

Thomas Piketty: “The current economic system is not working when it comes to solving inequality”

Following a recent event at LSE, Thomas Piketty took questions from LSE staff, students and members of the public on inequality and his latest book, Capital and Ideology.

Will we see a dramatic shift in inequality in the UK following Brexit?

I think, if anything, Brexit will exacerbate the trend toward rising inequality. This is because it will tend to exacerbate things […]

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    What does the future hold for the CDU following Annegret Kramp-Karrenbauer’s resignation?

What does the future hold for the CDU following Annegret Kramp-Karrenbauer’s resignation?

Annegret Kramp-Karrenbauer announced her resignation as leader of the Christian Democratic Union (CDU) on 10 February. Marcus Walsh-Führing writes the stage is now set for a contest over the future direction of the CDU, with those on the right of the party seeking a departure from the centrist approach pursued under Angela Merkel.

With her tenure as CDU party leader […]

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    Annegret Kramp-Karrenbauer’s resignation will accelerate Merkel’s exit

Annegret Kramp-Karrenbauer’s resignation will accelerate Merkel’s exit

Annegret Kramp-Karrenbauer’s resignation as the leader of the Christian Democratic Union (CDU) has thrown German politics into a period of uncertainty. John Ryan writes that the affair could ultimately hasten the departure of Angela Merkel as German chancellor.

The race to succeed Angela Merkel as German leader has been thrown wide open after Annegret Kramp-Karrenbauer (AKK), the woman long seen […]

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Book Review: Populism by Benjamin Moffitt

In Populism, Benjamin Moffitt offers a new study that looks to assess the current state of scholarship on populism. Jake Scott finds the book goes a significant way toward providing the clarity that can be so lacking when it comes to understanding populism.
Populism. Benjamin Moffitt. Polity. 2020.
Find this book: 
When the editors of The Oxford Handbook of Populism (2017) remarked that it was just as important […]

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    Only public dialogue can resolve Poland’s judicial reform crisis

Only public dialogue can resolve Poland’s judicial reform crisis

New disciplinary procedures for Polish judges have generated a sharply polarised response from Polish citizens. The reforms are part of a wider judicial reform programme the ruling Law and Justice party has implemented since coming to power in 2015. Anna Matczak argues that while politicians often cite public opinion when making their case for or against the reforms, there […]

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    Lessons from another extraordinary general election in Ireland

Lessons from another extraordinary general election in Ireland

Sinn Féin won the highest share of the vote at Ireland’s general election on 8 February. As Conor Little explains, the late surge in support for the party was so unexpected that it failed to run enough candidates in the election to fully capitalise on its popularity. The resulting volatility, fragmentation and polarisation will make coalition negotiations challenging, and […]

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Introducing eastern Germany’s far-right intellectuals

On 5 February, Thomas Kemmerich of the Free Democratic Party (FDP) was elected as Minister President of Thuringia with the help of the Alternative for Germany (AfD). Sabine Volk explains that the incident, which has generated a heated reaction in Germany, highlights the role of far-right groups in shaping public debate in eastern Germany.

Following the AfD’s coup in Thuringia […]

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What are the prospects for the Polish Peasant Party?

The unexpected success of Poland’s agrarian-centrist party in last autumn’s parliamentary election suggests that there could be a niche for a moderate conservative-centrist grouping among voters uncomfortable with the country’s right-wing ruling party and liberal-left opposition, writes Aleks Szczerbiak. But, critics argue, in spite of its changing electorate and apparently more open political style, the agrarian party remains a […]

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    A political economy forecast of Ireland’s 2020 general election: Will the government lose fewer seats than expected?

A political economy forecast of Ireland’s 2020 general election: Will the government lose fewer seats than expected?

Irish voters will go to the polls today for a general election. Michael S. Lewis-Beck and Stephen Quinlan outline a new forecast model which suggests that Leo Varadkar’s Fine Gael will lose seats, but perhaps fewer than opinion polls currently suggest.

Irish voters head to the ballot box today. According to recent national opinion polls, we are on the cusp of a seismic shift, […]

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    Far-right, populist or bourgeois? How the election of Thuringia’s regional governor shakes up German politics

Far-right, populist or bourgeois? How the election of Thuringia’s regional governor shakes up German politics

The election of liberal politician Thomas Kemmerich as regional governor of the German state of Thuringia has shaken up German politics. Julian Göpffarth writes that the surprise vote shows far-right ideas in Germany not only resonate with the economically left-behind, but also with an educated bourgeoisie.

Wednesday, 5 February 2020 is likely to enter German post war history as a […]

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Brexit and the liberal elephant trap

Given the success of populist politicians across Europe, some pro-Europeans have openly wondered whether they should adopt the same tactics as populist parties to make the case for European integration. Michael Cottakis argues that this would be a mistake. To reverse the trend, pro-Europeans must quit dabbling in populism and instead play to their strengths by promoting dialogue and […]

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    Azerbaijan’s snap election: a real contest or business as usual?

Azerbaijan’s snap election: a real contest or business as usual?

Azerbaijan will hold a snap parliamentary election on 9 February. Arzu Geybullayeva explains that although there is little expectation the vote will be genuinely free and fair, there is a sense that this election could constitute a break with the past given the visibility of new candidates. However, it remains to be seen whether this will translate into real […]

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Book Review: Resist: Stories of Uprising edited by Ra Page

In Resist: Stories of Uprising, editor Ra Page brings together contributors to offer an anthology of short stories and critical essays that narrate a rich counter-history of resistance in the UK, spanning from the Boudicca Rebellion to the protests in response to Grenfell Tower. Positioning fiction as a radical medium, this is a valuable book that will be of particular interest to participants and scholars […]

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