EU citizens are electing a new European Parliament between May 23 and 26. Voters in each of the bloc’s 28 member states vote for their national parties, whose MEPs then form pan-European groups in the parliament.
Voting started Thursday in the UK and the Netherlands and on Friday Ireland and the Czech Republic went to vote with the latter seeing voting continuing over to Saturday too.
Corporate Dispatch reviews polls and analysis carried by the Financial Times, Europe Elects and Politico on the various elections across Europe.
This will be updated with exit polls and official results, which will only be made public on Sunday 26th late evening.
Czech Republic – the projections
If turnout of 18.20% is maintained in this vote, Politico predicts ANO will beat second placed Pirati by 96,449 votes. That is just 1.40% of the 6,879,640 expected non-voters.
The FT aggregates a series of polls and is also projecting that ANO will get 5 seats reflecting a 19% share of the electorate preferences.
Czech Republic – The Issues
The European elections are likely to revolve around billionaire prime minister Andrej Babis of the Action of Dissatisfied Citizens (ANO).
In December, the European Parliament passed a resolution urging the European Commission to look into Babis’s “possible” conflicts of interest. This, as well as a separate, long-running domestic probe into his business activities, were central to the election campaign.
Meanwhile, far-right firebrand Tomio Okamura, who used hostility to migration to earn fourth place in the 2017 parliamentary elections, is likely to try to repeat the trick with the Freedom and Direct Democracy party (SPD). (FT)
Latvia – The Projections
If turnout of 30.24% is maintained in this vote, Politico predicts Saskana SDP will beat second-placed V by 25,191 votes. That is just 2.44% o9f the 1,032,190 expected non-voters.
The FT predicts that the eight seats in the European Parliament will be spread equally amongst the parties contesting.
Latvia – The Issues
Latvian voters will be giving their views on their new government, formed after a lengthy process, for the first time.
Financial regulation is in the spotlight following a series of dirty money scandals including the collapse of Latvia’s third-largest bank ABLV after US complaints of “institutionalised money laundering”. (FT)
Slovakia – The projections
If turnout of 13.05% is maintained in this vote, Politico predicts Smer-SD will beat second-placed L’SNS by 53,828 votes. That is just 1.40% of the 3,853,830 expected non-voters.
These results are translated in FT’s analysis in a 3 seat for the S&D Smer-Sd.
Slovakia – The Issues
Slovakia had the lowest turnout of any member state in the 2014 European elections, with just 13 per cent of voters going to the polls.
This time, there is likely to be higher interest as the country is in election mode.
The latest poll by the Institute for Public Affairs, a Slovak think tank, shows unprecedented interest in the May 25 vote, with turnout projected to hit at least 21 per cent, up from 13 per cent five years ago.
Much of the enthusiasm is at the extremes of public opinion.
The European poll falls between Slovakia’s presidential election, won by liberal upstart Zuzana Caputova in March, and a parliamentary poll next year.
Two new pro-EU groups which backed Ms Caputova, Progresivne Slovensko and Spolu (PS+SPOLU), are hoping that her success will give them a boost. At the other end of the spectrum, Marian Kotleba’s extreme right People’s Party Our Slovakia (ĽSNS), which recently survived an attempt to ban it, has been trying to use hostility to the EU and immigration to garner support. (FT)
Euronews reports that Slovakia’s far right has been edging upwards in the polls, so it would not come as a great surprise if it ranked second in the European Parliament elections on May 25. Recent polls show them with around 14% of the vote, only 5% behind the ruling social-conservative Direction-Social Democracy (Smer-SD) party.
Via POLITICO / FT / Europe Elects / Euronews