PES social democrats won the Viennese municipal elections with 39.5% of votes, but the real winner at polls is FPOE, the xenophobic extreme right-wing party that achieved its best result ever in the Austrian capital (30,9%): this is what emerges from the first exit poll spread by Austrian media. For the mayor Michael Haeupl’s social democrats who have been governing the city of Vienna since 1945, the votes have dropped by 4.9%. This percentage, however, is much lower than it was depicted in the catastrophic forecasts. The Austrian Freedom Party, Heinz Christian Strache’s anti-European formation, gains 5.1%, less than predicted by the surveys, considering the migrants emergency, which has rewarded, as already mentioned, the FPOE extremists. Over 150,000 migrants from the Middle East have transited Austria and Vienna in September alone, a crisis that was used by the far right to ask for the doors to be closed to this human tide.
The third power in the Austrian capital are the Greens, PES’ allies who have been voted by 11.5%, one point less than in 2010. They shall form a new regional government together with the Social Democrats. Conservative People’s Party (Christian-conservative-OVP) drops from 14% to 9.3%. Seats are obtained also by the liberal party NEOS (6.2%), which managed to exceed the electoral threshold of 5% for the first time.
But Austria is not the only country where extremists break through. The recent success of the Danish People’s Party is worth being mentioned as well; the neo-populist party obtained 20%. Also in Sweden (New Democracy), Finland and Norway (Progress Party) the right-wing nationalist parties have been constantly growing during the last years.
In Eastern Europe, perhaps as a reaction to years of communist dictatorships, are present ultra-nationalist formations: the Greater Romania Party, Zhirinovski’s Liberal Democrats in Russia, the Slovak Nationalist Party and the Croatian right wing (Hrvatska Stranka Prava), just to mention some of them. In Hungary, Fidesz Party is currently in the spotlight because of the dangerous intersection between a nationalist policy and one of the strongest migratory flows ever lived by the country.
Finally, there are those parties everyone knows already: Nigel Farage’s Ukip in United Kingdom, Golden Sunrise in Greece, or Le Pen’s National Front of Marine in France, which continue their march.