1996 European Parliament election in Austria

The European Parliament election of 1996 in Austria was the election of the delegation from Austria to the European Parliament in 1996.

European Parliament election in Austria, 1996

13 October 1996 1999 

21 seats to the European Parliament
  First party Second party Third party
Leader Ursula Stenzel Hannes Swoboda Franz Linser
Alliance EPP PES None
Seats won 7 6 6
Popular vote 1,124,921 1,105,910 1,044,604
Percentage 29.65% 29.15% 27.53%

  Fourth party Fifth party
Leader Johannes Voggenhuber Friedhelm Frischenschlager
Party Greens LiF
Alliance Green ALDE
Seats won 1 1
Popular vote 258,250 161,583
Percentage 6.81% 4.26%



In 1996, Austria was a country with a population of 7.9 million (5.8 million voters). The federal government was a "grand coalition" of the Social Democratic Party (SPÖ) and the Christian Democratic Party (ÖVP) and was led by Chancellor Franz Vranitzky.


At the last national election in 1995, the parties obtained the following results: SPÖ: 38.1%, ÖVP: 28.3%, FPÖ: 21.9%, Liberals: 5.5% and Greens: 4.8%.

Composition before election


An asterisk (*) indicates Members standing for re-election.

Electoral system


The electoral system used for the European elections was based on proportional representation, comparable to the system traditionally used in Austria for legislative elections.

The parties put forward lists of candidates. The seats are shared out on the basis of the percentage of the votes obtained by each list. Because of the limited number of seats, the lists were identical for the whole of Austria; there were no regional lists. The threshold required to win a seat was 4%. Candidates who win 7% of the total 'preference votes' obtained by their party would win one of the seats accorded to the party, irrespective of their position on the list. The lists of candidates had to be signed by three members of the national parliament, or by one Member of the European Parliament, or by 2600 voters. The minimum voting age was 18. European citizens residing in Austria were entitled to vote provided that they did not vote in their country of origin in the June 1994 European elections. 7205 European citizens registered and fulfilled that condition.

Parties running for election


The following political parties entered lists for the European elections on 13 October 1996:

Parties represented in the EP

Parties not represented in the EP

  • Forum Handicap (group defending the interests of the handicapped): Mr Klaus VOGET.
  • KPÖ (communists): Mr Walter BAIER.
  • N-Die Neutralen (group campaigning for the retention of neutrality)


Summary of the results of Austria's 13 October 1996 election to the European Parliament
National party European party Votes % +/– Seats +/–
People's Party (ÖVP) EPP 1,124,921 29.65 7
Social Democratic Party (SPÖ) PES 1,105,910 29.15 6
Freedom Party (FPÖ) None 1,044,604 27.53 6
The Greens – The Green Alternative (GRÜNE) EGP 258,250 6.81 1
Liberal Forum (LIF) ELDR 161,583 4.26 1
The Neutrals (N) None 48,600 1.28 0
Forum Handicap None 32,621 0.86 0
Communist Party (KPÖ) PEL 17,656 0.47 0
Valid votes 3,794,145
Blank and invalid votes 134,393
Totals 3,928,538 100.00 21
Electorate (eligible voters) and voter turnout 5,800,377 67.73
Source: Austrian Ministry of Interior[dead link]