While the results of the European Parliament elections were announced in May, the balance of power in the Parliament has also been affected by the decisions of parties to join new party groups in the weeks following the elections. Nicolai von Ondarza and Jan Will demonstrate the impact this movement between party groups has had, noting that the situation […]
An unexpectedly decisive European Parliament election victory gave Poland’s ruling Law and Justice party a major boost ahead of parliamentary elections later this year, although doubts remain over whether it will retain its majority. Aleks Szczerbiak explains that simply uniting the main anti-government parties in an ideologically diverse electoral alliance was clearly not enough for the opposition, which still […]
Right-wing populist parties made only modest electoral gains in the EP elections, but their influence is now unprecedented
Martin Selmayr, the Secretary-General of the European Commission, has stated that the ‘populist wave’ some analysts predicted could appear in the 2019 European Parliament elections was ‘contained’. Mattia Zulianello argues that this greatly overlooks a substantial increase in the influence of right-wing populism over European politics.
In the period preceding the European elections, many journalists and analysts were anticipating that […]
European Parliament elections were once famously characterised as ‘second order national elections’, but were the 2019 elections different? Felix Wiebrecht and James F. Downes write that although the results were shaped by the distinct features present in each of the 28 states taking part, there were at least five key trends visible across Europe.
Elections to the European Parliament have […]
The 2019 European Parliament elections were like no other: like no other European Parliament election before, and like no other democratic exercise in the world. In fact, it is probably the first time that we may call it a singular European Parliament election because so many of the trends that shaped it are pan-European, write Michael Bruter and Sarah Harrison, […]
Radical right parties have clear advantages in EP elections – their success shouldn’t come as a surprise
The 2019 European Parliament elections saw support decline for the main centre-left and centre-right groups, while the Greens and some radical right parties were among the main winners. But should we be surprised at radical right parties performing well in European elections? Julia Schulte-Cloos writes that European elections offer some key advantages for the radical right, and their success […]
The battle for Europe’s future: The next European Parliament will be more fragmented independently of Brexit
This week’s European Parliament elections are a battle for Europe’s future. In this blog, Thierry Chopin, Nicolò Fraccaroli, Nils Hernborg and Jean-Francois Jamet examine the evolution of political cleavages ahead of the vote and the potential impact of Brexit on their result. They argue the next European Parliament will be more fragmented independently of Brexit.
Political cleavages – that is, the key dividing […]
Polling indicates that Viktor Orbán’s Fidesz is highly likely to win another election victory in the 2019 European Parliament elections. Endre Borbáth and Johannes Wachs write that the real question in the election is not so much whether Fidesz will win, but rather how the party’s relationship with the European People’s Party will develop following the vote.
Hungary’s relationship with […]
The composition of the European Parliament is often discussed with reference to the balance of power between parties on the left and right of the political spectrum. But given the rise of new parties that define their ideology based on their support for or opposition to European integration, is this left-right divide still relevant? Drawing on a new study, […]
Sweden’s European Parliament election will be held on 26 May. Linda Berg and Jonathan Polk explain that as the elections will come less than a year after the country’s last general election, there may be an expectation they will be more ‘second order’ than usual. Yet, a trend towards higher turnout for EP elections in Sweden, increasingly favourable public […]
Brexit is not a major issue for people voting in the European Parliament elections in the rest of the EU. But Britain’s struggle to leave the EU may make staying in the bloc more attractive, says Sara Hagemann. Nonetheless, given the uncertainty surrounding the UK’s departure, Eurosceptic parties may be able to exploit hopes that a favourable exit deal […]
Book review: Le nouvel empire: L’Europe du vingt et unième siècle [The New Empire: Europe of the 21st Century] by Bruno Le Maire
In Le nouvel empire: L’Europe du vingt et unième siècle, Bruno Le Maire offers his take on the future of Europe. Published shortly before this week’s European Parliament elections, the book sets out a case for constructing European political unity not through the creation of a federal Europe, but over time, on the foundation of national sovereignties. Gijs de […]
European Parliament elections are often regarded as being ‘second-order’ contests, but is this always the case? Outlining results from a new study in Denmark, Derek Beach explains that when parties run strong campaigns, EU issues are debated in a visible way, and there is a high level of media coverage, these second-order dynamics can be broken. As such, a […]
How not to fight an election – lessons for Europe’s centre-right from the 2019 Spanish general election
The Spanish general election held on 28 April saw the Spanish Socialists, led by Pedro Sánchez, win the largest share of the vote. Yet as Javier Astudillo Ruiz explains, developments on the right of the political spectrum captured many of the headlines. He writes that the results offered a lesson for European centre-right parties of how not to fight […]
Can the rise of Eurosceptic and extremist parties be blamed on the mobilisation of people who previously had abstained from the polls? An analysis of the 2009 and 2014 elections to the European Parliament suggests that support for Eurosceptic parties would be largely unaffected by changes in voter turnout, write Uwe Remer-Bollow, Patrick Bernhagen and Richard Rose. Extremist parties would even have lost […]
Ireland’s European elections will be held on 24 May, with local elections also being held on the same day. Rory Costello writes that despite the importance of the Brexit negotiations for Ireland, the European election campaign has so far been surprisingly low-key, reflecting the degree of stability that has returned to the country’s politics since the turbulence of the […]
The European Parliament elections in Croatia will be held on 26 May. As Tena Prelec explains, turnout is expected to be low, but the results will set the stage for presidential elections later this year and the country’s next parliamentary elections in 2020.
Croatia, the EU’s youngest member state, will take part in its third European Parliament election on 26 May. European […]
Voters across Europe are set to go to the polls for European Parliament elections on 23-26 May, but how much do citizens really know about how the EU works? Florian Stoeckel presents findings from a new survey of citizens in France, Germany, Italy, Poland, Spain, and Sweden. He writes that while the EU’s democratic deficit is a major debating […]
The European Parliament elections will be the first major test at the polls for Emmanuel Macron since being elected president in 2017. These elections come after six months of street protests that have derailed a reform programme the president is now anxious to get back on track. The elections are set to be a tightly fought battle for supremacy […]