Eurosceptic parties have recorded some spectacular victories, but their influence on European Parliament will be limited.
Large countries of the “old” EU vote for eurosceptics
Let’s begin with France, where rebellion against President Emmanuel Macron has been sustained for a long time, among ogher organisations it can be seen in the protests of the Yellow Vests. Public dissatisfaction was reflected in election results, where eurosceptic National Front led by Marine Le Pen won by over 24% of votes.
Of course, it is a defeat for Macron, while the results themselves do not constitute a major breakthrough. The National Front also received very similar number of votes five years ago during previous EU elections.
Over the past five years, Italy has changed very much. Sunday election was won by League led by Matteo Salvini. His anti-immigrant party won 33%. Second place went to Democratic Party (about 22%), and third to Five Star Movement (18%). Therefore, eurosceptic parties were able to win over 50% of votes.
It is not a coincidence that we mention attitude to immigrants. Note that before the immigration crisis, the Democratic Party (red) won across the country.
Now it has literally been one region. The rest was divided between two parties – the League and the Five Stars Movement.
Theoretically, EU election should not happen in the UK. Local community has shown 3 years ago, that it has enough of the EU. Leaving the community, however, turned out to be very complicated. Effect was that Nigel Farage, the most ardent opponent of UK presence within the EU, had to mobilize himself for the next campaign. Few weeks was enough to set up a party with the right name (Brexit Party) and get almost 32% of votes.
Much better opinion about European Union must have Germany, where Angela Merkel’s party together with Bavarian CSU won 29% of votes. In turn, Greens were supported by 20.5% of voters. Social Democrats (16%) came third, and Alternative for Germany – fourth (11%). The latter party is known for its dislike of Angela Merkel’s immigration policy. Result of the Alternative for Germany is rather not impressed by its supporters, but in this case it is worth looking at details. It will turn out that the Alternative for Germany won in two eastern lands (Saxony and Brandenburg), and took second place in Thuringia. Map below are shows districs (blue) where the party won.
As you can see, Germany experiences more and more divisions among voters. In the east, more conservative attitude is seen. Bavaria is completely dominated by originating CSU. In turn, west and central part of western Germany are mainly supported by Angela Merkel.
Deteriorating moods in the east give food for thought and suggest that breakup of Germany is not impossible, but has low probability instead.
What have to happen to make everything stay the same
Smaller EU countries did not bring any surprises. Eurosceptic and anti-immigrant parties gained in Sweden and Belgium. It was the opposite in Denmark.
In Portugal and Spain, socialists had another success (some of them would have to be called communists).
Another big victory in Hungary took Viktor Orban, whose party won over 52% of the votes.
Most important, however, is the fact that despite these publicized victories of the eurosceptics (Farage, Le Pen, Salvini), European Parliament will not be much different from the previous one during the next term. There will be a slight reshuffle, a little more places will be taken by people who do not talk about anything other than climate change. However, if we look at the whole picture, then changes will be insignificant. This is confirmed by following graphic, which of course is based on preliminary estimates, but shows distribution of votes in the current parliament (numbers closer to the center) and future parliament (numbers outside).
In this case, we do not need to know the abbreviations of individual parties to predict that big changes are not going to take place.
This year’s results showed that Europeans are mostly satisfied with current state. Of course, present Europe has many advantages (e.g., free flow of services and goods), but it is hard not to notice that its importance in the world is decreasing year by year. European economy look pale against the U.S. and many Asian countries. Level of security falls with consent of Brussels and governments of largest EU countries. This state of affairs evokes anger of small part of society. The rest will be motivated only by a serious crisis.
We did not give European elections any special meaning. However, it was an opportunity for Europeans to show what they think about EU bureaucrats. As you can see, moods are mixed. It is, however noticeable, that in countries of the old European Union, people are more likely to have enough of the community. Certainly, greatest impact here is the economic stagnation of some countries and decline in security caused by immigrants influx.
Independent Trader Team