In the following lines I provide a brief calendar of the relevant elections ahead. Following this, I summarise the likely outcome of these elections in light of the present and past voter intention surveys. Much will change in the next year, but as usual much will also stay the same. I expect these political facts to ally themselves with economic and social ones and conspire to plunge Europe once again into turmoil. Until then, enjoy the calm before the storm, it seems Europe is looking at some shaky months ahead of itself.
Electoral Calendar – 2013
According to IFES, the 2013 calendar of European legislative and presidential elections is as follows:
- February 24-25: Italian Parliamentary election, due to the withdrawal of support to Mario Monti’s government by Berlusconi’s partisans at the end of 2012. Previously the election had been scheduled for April 2013
- September – Federal election to the Austrian Parliament.
Voter Intention Surveys: 2013 Elections
As the calendar above mentioned, the Italian parliamentary election is due to take place on February 24/25. The figure below point to the fact that while no party is likely to hold a majority of the seats, a coalition of the center left would right now be able to do so.
Italian politics has always been entertaining although not necessarily for the right reasons. It would appear that Berlusconi is out of Italian politics for some time to come, which is about time… Meanwhile, my best guess is that the centre left will ally itself with Monti and his platform’s partisans. Unless, Beppe Grillo (Italy’s Jon Stewart) and his 5 Star Movement or the Civil Revolution make more waves than expected…
In Austria, the political system appears relatively stable. The centre left (SPO) remains the dominant party, followed closely by the centre left. Not too far, only 5% point behind the OeVP the third place is firmly held by the FPO, who leads the smaller parties by such a margin it is inappropriate to lump sum it with anyone else than the top two parties. Do bear in mind that the FPO is the party once led by the infamous Jörg Haider. Anyway, you can have a look at their platform, but I’m not happily impressed… I’m not very familiar with the dynamics of coalition building in Austria, but I would not be surprised by a SPO-OVP-Green coalition government.
(Note: A previous version of this post made reference to the FPK, the Freedomites in Carinthia, and showed them in the second place. That graph was mistakenly attributed to represent voter intention surveys for the whole of Austria and I used that as a reason to sound alarmed about Austria. Fortunately, a reader kindly and correctly pointed to the fact that the chart actually represented the evolution of voter intentions in Carinthia [see below], not the whole of Austria. Apologies for the mistake. It was mine, not neuwal’s.)
Although the CDU remain the most popular party in German politics, the FDP has been all but obliterated, which should put a full stop to Anglo-Saxon reporter’s claims the Germans have become Eurosceptic once you consider that the FDP is the only party to have expressed such view. The CDU and the SPD as well as the Greens remain staunchly European. The next coalition government is likely to be any of the following: CDU-SPD-Greens, CDU-SPD, CDU-Greens, SPD-Greens, SPD-Greens-Pirates. Either way, Germany remains profoundly European, which should keep Austria in check.
For the original post, restored to its March 2012 content, please click here.