//EU Election, Day 1: Wilders’ Wipe Out?

EU Election, Day 1: Wilders’ Wipe Out?

The first day of the European election is likely to start with a bombshell: Tomorrow, the Netherlands and the United Kingdom are the first countries to vote in the European election. In the Netherlands, a national-conservative newcomer will most likely replace Geert Wilders’ PVV (ENF) as the major eurosceptic force.

Ring-wing PVV (ENF group in the EU Parliament) has been the major eurosceptic force in the Netherlands since the party was founded in 2006 and is currently in the European Parliament with four representatives. However, our projection currently sees them taking only one of the 26 Dutch seats in the EU Parliament (MEPs) in this election. The culprit for electoral loss is a new party right of the centre.

The national-conservative newcomer FvD (ECR Group in the EU Parliament) shocked the Dutch political field during the provincial election in April this year as they became the largest force with 14.5% of the votes. They gained a lot of seats from the PVV (ENF) in the regional elections and are expected to do the same during the European election. The party is projected to gain 5 MEPs – but it remains unclear how many voters of the largely eurosceptic electorate will turn out to vote.

The liberal party VVD (ALDE Group in the EU Parliament) became the biggest party in the last three general elections in the Netherlands but has never managed to win a European election until now. That could change this Thursday – the party of Prime Minister Mark Rutte is currently at five seats (+2) in our latest projection. Their coalition partner and fellow liberal party D66 (ALDE) received most votes during the last European election with four seats but, according to our latest projection, they will lose two of their current seats and enter the European Parliament with two representatives this time.

Centre-left party PvdA (S&D) is currently at three seats in our projection. However, they might even gain four seats due to their famous national top candidate: Frans Timmermans as transnational spitzenkandidat for the European Socialists is currently in a tight race with Manfred Weber to become the next president of the European Commission. GroenLinks (Greens/EFA) is rating in the national election polls above the PvdA for almost two years now, but Timmermans is expected to attract more voters to his party than Bas Eickhout, who is transnational spitzenkandidat for the European Greens this European election. GroenLinks is currently at three seats in our latest projection, but might as well end up with two due to the Timmermans effect.

SpitzenkandidiWHAT? Learn more: https://europeelects.eu/2019spitzenkandidaten/

Despite receiving fewer votes than D66, centre-right party CDA (EPP Group in the EU Parliament) gained most seats because of an agreement based on the d’Hondt electoral system with Christenunie-SGP. The CDA is currently at three seats (-2)  – their worst result ever – in our latest projection, but could as well end up with four due to the often high turnout of evangelical voters during the European elections. The Christian fundamentalist coalition ChristenUnie-SGP remains stable in the polls and is expected to keep their two seats. ChristenUnie-SGP is currently in the ECR, but are expected to leave the national-conservative party as soon as FvD joins.

Left-wing party SP (GUE/NGL-LEFT Group in the EU Parliament) started their campaign with a satirical video about Socialist spitzenkandidat Frans Timmermans, but so far it has not done them wonders in the polls. In our projection, they are at just one seat (-2), and it’s not unthinkable they completely miss out as they are polling just above the 3.85% threshold. Animal welfare party PvdD (GUE/NGL) are also polling just around the same threshold – in our projection, we expect them to gain one seat.

Pensioners’ interest party 50Plus (EPP) missed the electoral threshold by 0.15% during the last European and are expected to miss it by a small margin again. Migrants’ interest party Denk (*) and transnational eurofederalist party Volt (*) have appeared in the latest polls too, but both are not expected to meet the electoral threshold.

Lars joined Europe Elects in 2019, covering polls and elections in the Netherlands. He is currently pursuing a degree in Communication and Information Studies at Radbound University in Nijmegen (NL).