The far right is close to power in France. Will the rest of Europe follow?

by | Jul 7, 2024 | Top Stories

13 hours agoBy Katya Adler, Europe editor Getty ImagesHow likely is France to wake up on Monday morning to a new far-right dawn?That was the garishly painted, hotly debated scenario in media headlines, the EU in Brussels and seats of government across Europe following the first round of France’s parliamentary vote last week.But despite the spectacular showing by Marine Le Pen’s National Rally (RN) party, the short answer is: an RN majority is possible. Not probable.French centrist and leftist parties have strategically withdrawn candidates to bolster each other’s contenders ahead of Sunday’s decisive second round.But the impact of this election will be seismic, whether or not the RN wins an outright majority – or whether Jordan Bardella, its social media-savvy young president, becomes France’s new prime minister.Polls predict RN is all but guaranteed to win more seats than any other political grouping.That means a decades-old taboo will have been shattered in France, a core EU nation. Getty ImagesThe EU was born out of the ashes of World War Two. It was originally designed as a peace project, with wartime enemies, France and Germany, at its core.Far-right parties were banished to the outer fringes of European politics.Last month, world leaders gathered in northern France to mark 80 years since D-Day, the allied amphibious assault in Normandy that helped secure the defeat of Nazi Germany.But now, “far-right” or “hard-right” or “populist nationalist” parties are part of coalition governments in a number of EU countries, including the Netherlands, Italy and Finland.There are challenges in labelling these parties. Their policies frequently change. They also vary from country to country.And their normalisation is not an entirely new phenomenon. Former Italian prime minister, Silvio Berlusconi, a centre-right politician, was the first EU leader to take the plunge. He formed a government with the post-fascist political group, Movimento Sociale Italiano, back in 1994.Six years later, Austria’s conservatives went into coalition with the far-right Freedom Party. At the time, the EU was so outraged that it blocked official bilatera …

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[mwai_chat context=”Let’s have a discussion about this article:nn 13 hours agoBy Katya Adler, Europe editor Getty ImagesHow likely is France to wake up on Monday morning to a new far-right dawn?That was the garishly painted, hotly debated scenario in media headlines, the EU in Brussels and seats of government across Europe following the first round of France’s parliamentary vote last week.But despite the spectacular showing by Marine Le Pen’s National Rally (RN) party, the short answer is: an RN majority is possible. Not probable.French centrist and leftist parties have strategically withdrawn candidates to bolster each other’s contenders ahead of Sunday’s decisive second round.But the impact of this election will be seismic, whether or not the RN wins an outright majority – or whether Jordan Bardella, its social media-savvy young president, becomes France’s new prime minister.Polls predict RN is all but guaranteed to win more seats than any other political grouping.That means a decades-old taboo will have been shattered in France, a core EU nation. Getty ImagesThe EU was born out of the ashes of World War Two. It was originally designed as a peace project, with wartime enemies, France and Germany, at its core.Far-right parties were banished to the outer fringes of European politics.Last month, world leaders gathered in northern France to mark 80 years since D-Day, the allied amphibious assault in Normandy that helped secure the defeat of Nazi Germany.But now, “far-right” or “hard-right” or “populist nationalist” parties are part of coalition governments in a number of EU countries, including the Netherlands, Italy and Finland.There are challenges in labelling these parties. Their policies frequently change. They also vary from country to country.And their normalisation is not an entirely new phenomenon. Former Italian prime minister, Silvio Berlusconi, a centre-right politician, was the first EU leader to take the plunge. He formed a government with the post-fascist political group, Movimento Sociale Italiano, back in 1994.Six years later, Austria’s conservatives went into coalition with the far-right Freedom Party. At the time, the EU was so outraged that it blocked official bilatera …nnDiscussion:nn” ai_name=”RocketNews AI: ” start_sentence=”Can I tell you more about this article?” text_input_placeholder=”Type ‘Yes'”]
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