Alarm sounded in the EU

TEHRAN, May 28 (MNA) – Although the level of political participation in the 2019 parliamentary election was higher than in previous elections, this did not prevent the increase in the number of votes of nationalist and extremist parties.

Of course, the Green Party's victory in the European Parliamentary elections will reduce the bitterness of the triumph of nationalist parties in Europe!

The recent parliamentary elections in Europe have signaled alarm for the eurozone and the European Union. Of course, French protests and public discontent in Europe were the basis for the failure of traditional parties in the recent parliamentary elections in Europe. Meanwhile, the silence of European leaders such as German Chancellor Angela Merkel in the face of recent unrests, indicate that they're seriously worried about the future of the European Union and the Eurozone. At any rate, determining the relevance between recent protests in France and current and future changes in united Europe has become one of the main concerns of analysts of the European and international affairs. Meanwhile, some European politicians are trying to analyze the France protests as an infrastructural and skin-deep objection. However, the kind of slogans that the yellow vests are using against the capitalist system, and the generalization of protests to other parts of Europe, suggest that this phenomenon can't be regarded as a transitory, infrastructural and shallow crisis. On the contrary, it's obvious that the ongoing protests in France have a fundamental and basilar nature.

A review of the results of the European Parliamentary elections

The results of the European parliamentary election show that the green continent is in an emergency. As Euronews reported, Voters from the 28 member states of the European Union have cast their ballot in what is the second biggest democratic exercise in the world. Official projections showed parties committed to strengthening the European Union held on to two-thirds of seats in the EU parliament, though far-right and nationalist opponents saw strong gains.

Austria

The ruling People's Party, led by Chancellor Sebastian Kurz, comes in first with 34.9%, according to provisional results. It is followed by the Social Democrats with 23.4% and the far-right Freedom Party (FPO) with 17.2%. The latter's score is believed to have been hit by the so-called Ibiza scandal which resulted in party leader Heinz-Christian Strache resigning as vice-chancellor last week after a secret video appeared to show him trying to trade public contracts for party donations from a woman he thought was the niece of a Russian oligarch.

Of course, the recent political developments in Austria have had a direct impact on the outcome of the election. What has been happening today in Austria has led to concerns among EU leaders. Vice Chancellor of Austria, Heinz-Christian Strache, head of the far-right, anti-immigrant Freedom Party which was in Kurz's ruling coalition, had resigned earlier Saturday, a day after the video was published.

The video hit a nerve amid broader concerns about ties between Russia and right-wing populist parties critical of the European Union.

Austrian Chancellor Sebastian Kurz has called for an early election after his vice chancellor resigned over a covertly shot video that showed him apparently promising government contracts to a prospective Russian investor. Kurz said he would ask President Alexander Van der Bellen to set a date for a new election "as soon as possible."

Belgium

Belgium wasn’t holding just one election on Sunday, but three: federal, regional and European. For the latter, partial results showed the moderate separatist Flemish N-VA party had the largest score nationwide, with 13.5% of the votes. The anti-immigrant Vlaams Belang (Flemish Interest) came in second with 11.4%. While the more prosperous Dutch-speaking Flanders shifted to the right, French-speaking Wallonia moved to the left. The Socialist Party, at 10.5%, came in third nationwide. The Liberal Party MP of Prime Minister Michel came only in the seventh position.

Bulgaria

Even though voting is compulsory in Bulgaria, voter turnout was only 30.83%. As pollsters expected, Bulgaria's vote was split between the center-right GERB party (30.6%) and the country's socialist coalition party (26.42%), according to official estimates. The youngest current European parliament member is Bulgarian Andrey Novakov, who is 30.

Croatia

Provisional results placed the conservative Democratic Union (HDZ), which rules the country in a coalition, and the Social Democratic Party in the lead with 22.71% and 18.69% of the vote respectively. The right-wing Croatian Conservative Party is third with 8.49%.

Cyprus

Final results showed the ruling DISY party — an EPP member — came in first with 29% of the vote, broadly on par with 2014 results. Niyazi Kizilyurek, from the communist AKEL party — which came in second place (27.5%) — has become the first Turkish Cypriot to be elected as an MEP. The country is divided between Greek Cypriots and minority Turkish Cypriots, but over 80,000 Turkish Cypriots are reportedly eligible to vote in EU elections.

Czech Republic

The ruling centrist ANO party increased its number of MEPs from 4 to 6, official results showed. The second biggest delegation from the country is a right-wing formation, the Civic Democratic Party, which doubles its MEPs to 4.The anti-establishment, anti-corruption Czech Pirate party came in third with three MEPs, tied with the conservative STAN TOP coalition.

Denmark

Provisional results put the Social Democrats in the lead with 23.5%, ahead of the center-right Venstre party — ruling the country in a coalition — which scored 21.5% of the vote. The Socialist party was third (13.2%) while the Red-Green Alliance looked set to win its first ever seat at the European Parliament with 11%. The People's Movement Against the EU got 3.9%. Danes are scheduled to return to the poll on June 5 for the country's general election.

Estonia

The liberal Reform party retained its first place with 26.2% of the vote, official results showed. The Social Democratic party claimed the second place with 23.3% of the vote, while the Centre party was in third with 14.4%. The far-right Conservative People's Party tripled its score to come in fourth with 12.7% and will be represented in the European Parliament with one MEP.

Finland

The Scandinavian country was the first to officially release its results which saw the center-right National Coalition Party claiming the top spot, with 20.8% of the vote, slightly below its 23.2% from 2014. The Green League secured the second place with 16.0%, ahead of the Social Democrats (14.6%) and the populist Finns Party, which makes it in the fourth position with 13.8%.

France

With 91% of the votes counted, Marine Le Pen's far-right National Rally party is leading with 24.08%, while the La Republique En Marche movement of President Emmanuel Macron is second with 21.89%. The National Rally, then-known as the Front National, also won the EU election in 2014 while Macron's movement did not exist then. The Green party surprised to clinch the third place with 13.14% of the vote. French far-right National Rally party leader Marine Le Pen, May 26, 2019.REUTERS/Charles Platiau

Germany

An exit poll confirmed projections made ahead of the elections that predicted a surge of support for the Green Party, which clinched the second place with 21.8% of the vote — double its 2014 result. The ruling CDU/CSU alliance has come in first with a reported 28% of the vote while the anti-migrant and anti-euro Alternative for Germany (AfD) is fourth with 10.5%.

Greece

The main opposition party, the conservative New Democracy movement, beat the ruling left-wing Syriza formation with 33.3% and 23.8 % of the vote respectively, provisional results showed. This outcome prompted Greek Prime Minister Alexis Tsipras to call for a snap general election in June. The country’s economic situation and the name change agreement with North Macedonia have taken precedence over European issues.

Hungary

The National Election Office has announced that the ruling right-wing Fidesz party has won with 52.14% of the vote. The Democratic Coalition came in second with 16.26% with the liberal Momentum movement in third with 9.92%.

Fidesz's victory came despite repeated clashes with Brussels over rule of law and migration. The party has also been suspended from the center-right European People’s Party grouping in the parliament.

Ireland

Both the GUE/NGL and EPP parties are estimated to win four seats respectively out of Ireland's 11 seats in the EU Parliament, according to an exit poll. The Greens had a strong showing and became the third party in Ireland with an estimated two seats. The campaign was dominated by Brexit fears as the UK, Ireland's largest trading partner, is due to leave the bloc.

Italy

Matteo Salvini's far-right League overtook the Five-Star Movement as Italy's largest party after winning 33.6% of the vote, according to provisional results. The Five Star Movement is now reported to score the third place (16.6%), behind the center-left Democratic Party (23.5%).

Latvia

The liberal-conservative New Unity party — aligned with the EPP — retained the first place, although its share of the vote dropped from more than 46% in 2014 to 26%, provisional results show. It is followed by the Social Democratic Party (17.5%) and the right-wing populist National Alliance with 16.4%, the latter of which finished second in 2014 with 14.3%.

Lithuania

Initial results, with about 90% of votes counted, showed the center-right Homeland Union had won with 17.41% of the vote, followed by the Social Democratic Party with 16.90%. The Farmers and Greens Union clinched third place with 13.93%. Lithuania also held the second round of its presidential election which was won by economist Gitanas Naus? da, who is not affiliated to any political party.

Luxembourg

The liberal Democratic Party and the conservative Christian Social People's Party will both send two MEPs to the European Parliament having scored 21.44 and 21.1% respectively. The Green Party came in third with 18.91% of the vote, official results show.

Malta

Prime Minister Muscat's Labour party won by a landslide with 55.9% of the vote, while the rival Nationalist party trailed far behind (36.2%). Government corruption was an important topic in Malta during the EU elections as the two major parties have both accused each other of wrongdoing.

Poland

The ruling Law and Justice party (PiS) came first with 43.1% of the vote, provisional results showed.

The European Coalition, led by European Council President Donald Tusk and comprised of his Civic Platform and a group of leftist and rural politicians, came in second with 38.41%. But turnout, although at a record high for EU elections in the country, still only stood at 43%. The EU elections kicked off a series of polls in the country: a parliamentary one follows in the autumn before a presidential vote next year.

Portugal

Preliminary results — with 97.5% of the votes counted — show that the Socialist Party has won with 33.8%. The Social Democratic Party has placed — a distant — second with 22.6% with the Left Bloc trailing in the third position with 9.6% of the vote. The Green party, Pan is on 4.8% and might have its first seat in the European parliament.

Romania

Provisional results showed a sharp decline in support for the ruling Social Democrats (PSD) which has clashed with Brussels over anti-corruption and rule of law reforms. The PSD trailed the pro-EU National Liberal Party (PNL) with respectively 24.8% and 27.8% of the vote. In the last national ballot in 2016, PSD won 45% of the vote. The A 2020 USR PLUS alliance, which campaigned on anti-corruption and green issues, came in third with 18.1% of the vote.

PNL and other pro-EU parties may have benefited from the fact that there was a referendum being held at the same time on PSD's controversial reforms. Meanwhile, thousands of Romanian diaspora protested outside embassies and polling stations across Europe Sunday after long queues left many unable to vote.

Slovakia

The Progressive Slovakia/Together coalition — led by recently-elected President Zuzana Caputova — has won the EU election with 20.1% of the vote, official results show. The social-democratic SMER party finished second with 15.7% ahead of the far-right People's Party with 12.1%

Slovenia

The liberal Democratic Party has retained its top spot with a score pretty much identical to the one in 2014 (26.48%), according to preliminary results released by the State Election Commission with more than 98% of the votes counted. The center-left Social Democrats came in second, more than doubling its results from 2014 with 18.57%. The list led by the country's Prime Minister, meanwhile, came in third with 15.62%.

Spain

With more than 99% of votes counted, the Socialist party, led by Prime Minister Pedro Sanchez, had scored an impressive 32.9% — ten percentage points higher than in 2014 and far ahead of the center-right People's Party's 20.1%.

The far-right Vox Party, which was contending its second EU elections, finished in fifth with 6.8% of the vote, far lower than the 10.3% it gathered in last month's general election. Catalan separatist leaders Carles Puigdemont and Oriol Junqueras were both elected MEPs, but with question marks over whether they’ll be able to take up their seats, as Euronews looked at in this article.

Sweden

Preliminary results put the ruling Social Democrats in the lead with 24% of the vote. Their coalition partner, the Green Party, actually looks set to lose some four percentage points from 2014 and finish fourth with 11%. This is quite a disappointing score for the Green Party in Greta Thunberg's home country. The teen activist kick-started a global protest last year calling on lawmakers to take more decisive action to tackle the climate emergency. The far-right Sweden Democrats nearly doubled their score with a projected 16%, compared to 9.67% in 2014 to finish third, right behind the conservative Moderate Party's 17%.

The Netherlands

The anti-EU, far-right Freedom Party (PVV), which was projected to do fairly well, actually saw its support plummet to 3.5% from 13.2% in 2014, according to provisional results. Instead, the pro-EU left-wing Labour party is projected to be the big winner with 19%, followed by the governing (in a coalition) People's Party for Freedom and Democracy with 14.6%.

UK

With 99% of the votes counted, Nigel Farage's Brexit Party is leading its nearest rival, the pro-Remain Liberal Democrats, by a large margin with 31.6% and 20.3% respectively. The main opposition Labour Party is third with 14.1% while the ruling Conservatives are in fifth with 9.1%.

What Western media say about the results of the European Parliamentary elections?

Most European media have focused on the issue of Emanuel Macro's defeat in the European Parliamentary elections. Also, the triumph of nationalists in Britain and the fall in the number of votes of the two traditional parties of Germany, the Social-Democratic Party, and the Christian Democrats have attracted many European analysts. Here are some reviews by Western media:

The thing Eurocrats are most worried about with EU election results

The European Parliament has been traditionally dominated by two political groups: the center-right European People's Party and center-left Socialists and Democrats. But this year's European Parliament election is different.

With a surge in populist politics and Brexit still weighing on everyone's minds, there's been dwindling support for the two traditional groups. The two houses for the first time in decades could see the end of their ruling coalition if they fail to secure enough seats to together form a majority. And it's this possibility that worries those within the EPP and S&D currently leading in Brussels.

"With these European elections, we could see a much more fragmented European Parliament," said Darren McCaffrey, Euronews' political editor."So what could happen? Ultimately we could see the EPP and the Socialists, who have essentially provided a pretty stable majority for the last couple of decades, well they may not have a combined majority anymore."

"Couple that with unstable coalitions between populist parties, who essentially don't necessarily agree on potentially an awful lot — but are determined to change the system," he added. According to 21 May projections from Europe Elects, a group that provides poll aggregation and election analysis, the EPP and S&D are slated to take a dramatic hit. The S&D is projected to lose 39 seats while the center-right EPP is expected to take drumming to the tune of 48 seats. The likely shake-up is, in part, due to support for populist parties, including the Brexit Party in the UK.

"You've got the Brexit Party, back in Parliament campaigning for a no-deal Brexit inside and outside the institutions," said McCaffrey.But it's the thought of stripping away the centralised powers of the EU that may be the biggest nightmare for those in Brussels.
"What might be most be the most worrying of all? It could be those parties campaigning to take powers away from the Commission and repatriate them back to national capitals," he said."All this is possible, if not inevitable. But if it does happen, ultimately it will be because of democracy, because of the will of the people, because of what you at home want."

May laments 'very disappointing' EU elections as voters take Brexit revenge

As The Guardian reported, An insurgent Brexit party and reinvigorated Liberal Democrats have delivered a harrowing night for the Conservatives and Labour at the European elections, prompting profound soul-searching at the top of both major parties. Nigel Farage’s Brexit party humiliated the Conservatives in their rural heartlands but also made sweeping gains in cities such as Cardiff, Leeds, and Sheffield, as well as in Hillingdon, the home of Boris Johnson’s seat, where the Tories were pushed into fourth.

Farage’s success campaigning in favour of a no-deal Brexit is likely to push the Conservative leadership candidates into hardline positions on leaving the EU. In her first response, Theresa May said the European elections were a “very disappointing night” for the Tories, adding: “It shows the importance of finding a Brexit deal, and I sincerely hope these results focus minds in parliament.”

Jeremy Hunt, the foreign secretary, warned that the Conservative were facing an “existential threat”, while Johnson said it was a “crushing rebuke” to the government’s failure to take the UK out of the EU. The night also confirmed an extraordinary revival of the Lib Dems, who overtook the Tories in Theresa May’s Maidenhead seat and came first in Jeremy Corbyn’s north London home of Islington.

Overnight, the Brexit party gained 28 seats, with the Lib Dems in second on 15 seats. Labour held 10, having lost seven so far, the Green party won seven, a gain of four, and the Tories were languishing in fifth place, with just three seats. The results so far show that the hard Brexit vote totaled 36.8% – with the Brexit party on 33.3% and Ukip on 3.5%. The overall total for pro-leave parties was up at 45.6% including the Conservatives on a historically low 8.8%.

The pro-remain vote added up to 41.5% – with the Lib Dems on 20.9%, the Greens on 12.5%, the SNP on 3.5%, Change UK on 3.6% and Plaid Cymru on 1%. Labour, which tried to appeal to both sides with a soft Brexit pitch or a possible confirmatory referendum, was on 14.6%.

The punishing result for Labour is likely to prompt Corbyn’s critics to question again the Brexit strategy he and his advisers have pursued, with recriminations likely to spill into the open in the coming days. The shadow foreign secretary, Emily Thornberry, said Labour must radically readdress its Brexit policy and campaign for a second referendum, and shortly afterward Corbyn vowed the party would reflect on the results.

The Labour leader said: “After three years of Tory failure to deliver a Brexit that works for the whole country, these elections became a proxy second referendum. Over the coming days, we will have conversations across our party and movement, and reflect on these results on both sides of the Brexit divide.”

A triumphant Farage, re-elected to the European Parliament in the South East, said his party had achieved a historic result. The Brexit party won all of the regions in England, apart from London, as well as Wales, and took almost 2 million more votes than their closest rivals, the Lib Dems.“Never before in British politics has a new party launched just six weeks ago topped the polls in a national election,” Farage said.

“There’s a huge message here, massive message here. The Labour and Conservative parties could learn a big lesson from tonight, though I don’t suppose that they actually will.”

Among those elected to the European Parliament for the Brexit party were the former Conservative MP Ann Widdecombe and Annunziata Rees-Mogg, the sister of the Tory hard Brexiter Jacob Rees-Mogg.

The Brexit party chair Richard Tice, who won a seat in the East of England, echoed Farage’s demand that his party be included in any forthcoming Brexit negotiations with the EU. He said voters were “sending a clear message back to Westminster that we want a WTO [World Trade Organization] Brexit”.

“What’s so important now is we come in and help the government quickly because it is in paralysis and is navel-gazing about who should be the next leader,” he said. Among the Tory casualties was the party’s European parliament leader Ashley Fox. The prominent Tory Brexiter MEP Daniel Hannan, one of the key figures in Vote Leave, was narrowly re-elected but said he was concerned the Brexit party could take seats from the Conservatives in a general election.

In Hannan’s South East region, the Brexit party came top in 27 of 31 areas, with three won by the Lib Dems and one by the Greens. Labour and the Conservatives failed to win a single area.

Hannan said it was “the worst result my party has suffered in its 185-year history” but that he could see why the party had taken a pummeling. “It’s been a very bad night and in way understandably; you don’t need to be any kind of expert on politics – people voted leave and we haven’t left,” he told Sky News. At the opposite end of the Brexit divide, the Liberal Democrats dominated in London at the expense of Labour, winning areas such as Camden and Lambeth by almost 10,000 more votes than Labour, despite five-figure Labour majorities in most of those parliamentary seats. Vince Cable’s party took three seats in the capital, with two each for Labour and the Brexit party and another for the Greens.

Cable said voters had backed its “clear, honest, unambiguous message” and delivered the party’s best European elections result, which means they have more MEPs than MPs in the Commons.“There is a clear lesson for Labour in tonight’s results: get off the fence. In trying to please everybody they have pleased nobody,” Cable said.

Alastair Campbell, Tony Blair’s former press secretary, said he had voted Liberal Democrat. “I didn’t vote Labour for the first time in my life and it was a very, very strange feeling,” he told the BBC. Thornberry was the first senior shadow cabinet minister to call for a radical overhaul of Labour’s Brexit policy.

“We went into an election where the most important issue was what was our view on leaving the EU, and we were not clear about it,” she said. “We were not clear on the one single thing that people wanted to hear.“We should have said quite simply that any deal that comes out of this government should be put to a confirmatory referendum, and that remain should be on the ballot paper, and that Labour would campaign to remain. I think that we will after these elections need to look very carefully at why it is that we got this result.”
Recriminations also came from the trade unions. The TSSA general secretary, Manuel Cortes, said the party should adopt a policy on Europe that was more in tune with its pro-European members. “I have knocked on many doors during the campaign and it’s blindingly obvious that our clear-as-mud line on Brexit hurt us deeply,” he said.

Any handbrake turn on Labour’s Brexit policy is likely to meet with resistance in the shadow cabinet. The shadow Cabinet Office minister, Jon Trickett, a close ally of Corbyn, pointed to results in Labour areas where the Brexit party had gained votes, including his own seat.
“Those ‘important people’ who said Wakefield is now for remain need to show some humility; they were wrong,” he said, a veiled dig at his pro-remain neighboring MP Mary Creagh. “I never doubted my constituents’ determination to have their voice heard and that is why I have stuck to my view to accept the original referendum.”

In Wales, Plaid Cymru took the lion’s share of the pro-remain vote but the Brexit party topped the poll, snatching a seat from the Conservatives and one from Ukip.

In Scotland, where the final result will not be known until later on Monday morning, the Scottish National party was predicted to win three MEPs, with Labour failing to win a single seat.

The night also saw a significant boost for the Green party, a pattern seen across Europe. Molly Scott-Cato, the Green MEP re-elected in the South West, said it was a “thrilling night” for greens across EU member states.

The results seemed to confirm the disintegration of Ukip, which lost all its seats, including that of its leader, Gerard Batten, in London. Change UK, the nascent remain party led by a breakaway group of Labour and Tory MPs, failed to make any breakthrough.

The far-right independent candidate Tommy Robinson was roundly defeated in the North West, claiming he had faced a “near impossible task”. Robinson, whose real name is Stephen Yaxley-Lennon, was repeatedly targeted by protesters, including two who threw milkshakes over him.

Macron Chastened as French Voters Hand Narrow Victory to Le Pen

As Bloomberg reported, French President Emmanuel Macron suffered a narrow defeat to Marine Le Pen’s nationalist movement in Sunday’s European parliamentary elections.

Macron’s Republic on The Move had 21.9% of the vote compared with 24.1% for the anti-European National Rally with 90% of ballots counted. The Greens rose to third with 13.1%, the conservative Republicans got 8% and the Socialists 6.4%. In the last EU vote in 2014 Le Pen beat the conservatives by 4 percentage points with Macron’s Socialist predecessor Francois Hollande trailing in third.

The result is a setback for 41-year-old Macron in his battle for legitimacy as he tries to persuade the rest of the European Union to pursue tighter integration. Still, the narrow defeat most likely won’t derail his domestic agenda as the government prepares for a major overhaul of the pension system. Polls in Germany showed Chancellor Angela Merkel’s Christian Democrats came first, although with fewer seats than last time.

“I greet this result with humility,” said Prime Minister Edouard Philippe, who will keep his job according to the president’s office. "When you come second in an election, you can’t call it a victory."

Finance Minister Bruno Le Maire said that Macron’s party had performed well when you look at how incumbents have performed in past EU elections and that it gives the government an incentive to continue with its reforms. Macron’s team said that the projections show the ruling party is maintaining its electoral base from the 2017 presidential election and so the result shouldn’t be interpreted as a punishment. Jordan Bardella, who headed the electoral list for Le Pen’s National Rally, said the president and his policies had been rejected by voters.

“The French people have this evening inflicted a clear sanction as well as a lesson in humility on the French president, who chose to bring all of his authority to the campaign," he said. "The French president turned this election into a referendum. He and his politics have been rejected.”

Turnout was up around 10 percentage points from 2014 and the increase was particularly marked in regions where Le Pen’s party has gained ground in the past years. The best performance was made by the environmentalist party, EELV, which rose 4 percentage points compared with 2014. Yannick Jadot, the party chief, called it a “green wave.”

European Election Results Show Growing Split Over Union’s Future

Steven Erlanger wrote in New York Times that Populists and nationalists who want to chip away at the European Union’s powers increased their share in Europe’s Parliament after four days of continent-wide elections, but it was not the deluge that many traditionalists had feared.

When the vote counting is done, the populists are expected to get around 25 percent of the 751 seats, up from 20 percent five years ago, figures released by the European Union showed on Sunday. But a higher than usual turnout suggested that pro-European voters were also more motivated than before.

Taken together, the results indicated that the struggle over the future direction of the bloc — more integration among European countries, or less — would only intensify. With more of a voice in Parliament, populists and nationalists would be expected to try to push harder on issues like controlling immigration and the budget. And they are likely to try to gum up the plans of the pro-Europeans, pressing for more power to go to the nations rather than to a bureaucracy they consider elitist.

Still, the anti-E.U. forces remain disparate and divided and may have trouble wielding significant power. Instead, the biggest impact was likely to be felt exactly where the far-right and populist leaders most wanted — in their home countries, particularly in France and Italy, where they are threatening to further disrupt traditional party systems and angling to gain power. For months, they have promoted these elections as a litmus test of their popularity.

“The electorate is crying out for change and is therefore volatile — preferring to back new insurgents rather than the status quo parties that have been around for decades,” said Mark Leonard, director of the European Council on Foreign Relations. “The fear of a far-right takeover of the European Parliament has mobilized Europe’s pro-European forces, resulting in a huge surge in turnout and in support for Green and Liberal parties throughout Europe.”

On Sunday, the results quickly reverberated across the political scene from Rome to Paris. In France, the vote results on Sunday suggested a difficult time ahead for President Emmanuel Macron, who has presented himself as a champion of European integration and a bulwark against those who wish to weaken it. His slate for the European Parliament being defeated by the National Rally party of Marine Le Pen, an outspoken critic of the bloc, according to final results.

The defeat appeared to be by a small margin — but it would be enough to deal a symbolic blow to the young president.Ms. Le Pen called the result “a vote for France, and for the people.”

Mr. Macron’s prime minister, Edouard Philippe, conceded defeat and said that he received “these results with humility.” He said that “political leaders need to hear the message” and that it was “a time for action.”

Turnout was expected to top 50 percent in France, significantly higher than the 42 percent of five years ago. The same was true for the European Union as a whole, the first increase in turnout in 40 years and the best since 1994.

In Germany, where turnout was also high, the Greens did very well, becoming the main party on the left, while the Social Democratic Party did very badly, which may prompt the party to leave the existing coalition.

The largest party, the governing Christian Democrats, also lost some ground, while the far-right populists, the Alternative for Germany, got about 11 percent. It appeared to be a weaker showing for the party than in the national elections of 2017 when it won 12.6 percent. In the European Parliament, with the decline of mainstream parties and increased fragmentation, for the first time in 40 years, the center-right and the center-left would no longer control a majority. Both lost ground, with centrist Liberals, Greens and the populists all gaining.

While pro-European mainstream parties appear to have won about two-thirds of the seats, the center-right and center-left will have to cooperate in coalition with the Liberals, helped by Mr. Macron’s party, to form a sustainable majority. And the Greens, who did well all over the continent, will have a louder voice.

Leaders of the two largest mainstream parties in the European Parliament ruled out working with the far right and appealed for cooperation among pro-European parties. Manfred Weber, leader of the center-right European People’s Party, said Sunday night that “from now on, those who want to have a strong European Union have to join forces.” He said his group would not cooperate “with any party that doesn’t believe in the future of the European Union.”Centrists took some solace from the results.

The one thing the varying populists do agree on is disrupting the system, and they are bound to make consensus more difficult on future European budgets and legislation. This European Parliament will simply be messier and harder to control than before.

Britain was a special case, given its plans to leave the European Union. The election was seen more as a judgment on the two main parties — the governing Conservatives and the opposition Labour — rather than any continental issue. The results looked to be a disaster for both main parties, with a resounding victory for the new Brexit Party of Nigel Farage. But the impact will be more on British domestic politics than European politics.

Historically, turnout for European parliamentary elections is low, and voters tend to use the five-year elections as a way to protest their national governments. Most voters cast ballots on national issues, for national parties, which then gather into political groupings in the European Parliament.

What has happened in Europe?

The reality is that the European Union is in a difficult position. The European Union will face a crisis of leadership and leadership in the near future. This social excitement has now become a "political demand" in the West. The dissatisfaction of European citizens with their governments has caused them to explicitly demand the return to the twentieth century and the time before the formation of United Europe. Obviously, in this situation, "Crossing the traditional parties" would become a general demand in the West. Under such circumstances, Merkel's and other European leaders' warnings about the return to the twentieth century and the time before the formation of United Europe simply means the inability of the Eurozone authorities in preventing the Right-extremism in the West.

Now, the green parties in Europe are the last hope for the European Union and the eurozone! The failure of the traditional parties in the UK, Germany, and France is well illustrated by the extent to which the crisis is serious in Eu and the eurozone...

MNA/TT

News Code 145818

Tags

Your Comment

You are replying to: .
  • 5 + 8 =