2019 European Parliament election in Austria


The 2019 European Parliament election was held in Austria on 26 May 2019 to elect the country's 18 members of the European Parliament.[1] The Austrian People's Party (ÖVP) gained two seats for a total of seven, while the Freedom Party of Austria (FPÖ) and The Greens each lost one.

2019 European Parliament election in Austria

 2014 26 May 2019 2024 

All 18 Austrian seats to the European Parliament
Turnout3,834,662 (59.8%)
14.4%
  First party Second party Third party
 
Leader Othmar Karas Andreas Schieder Harald Vilimsky
Party ÖVP SPÖ FPÖ
Alliance EPP PES EAPN
Last election 5 seats, 27.0% 5 seats, 24.1% 4 seats, 19.7%
Seats won 7 5 3
Seat change 2 0 1
Popular vote 1,305,954 903,151 650,114
Percentage 34.6% 23.9% 17.2%
Swing 7.6% 0.2% 2.5%

  Fourth party Fifth party
 
Leader Werner Kogler Claudia Gamon
Party Greens NEOS
Alliance Green ALDE
Last election 3 seats, 14.5% 1 seat, 8.1%
Seats won 2 1
Seat change 1 0
Popular vote 532,194 319,024
Percentage 14.1% 8.4%
Swing 0.4% 0.3%

Plurality winner for each district. Red denotes SPÖ received the most votes and cyan denotes ÖVP received the most votes.

The election took place nine days after the start of the Ibiza affair, which led to the resignation of Vice-Chancellor and FPÖ leader Heinz-Christian Strache and the collapse of the federal ÖVP–FPÖ government. The European election was seen as a victory for the ÖVP and a defeat for the FPÖ, who were forecasted to perform substantially better.

Contesting parties


The table below lists parties elected in the 2014 European Parliament election.

Name Ideology Lead
candidate
2014 result
Votes (%) Seats
ÖVP Austrian People's Party
Österreichische Volkspartei
Christian democracy
Othmar Karas
27.0%
5 / 18
SPÖ Social Democratic Party of Austria
Sozialdemokratische Partei Österreichs
Social democracy
Eugen Freund
24.1%
5 / 18
FPÖ Freedom Party of Austria
Freiheitliche Partei Österreichs
Right-wing populism
Euroscepticism

Harald Vilimsky
19.7%
4 / 18
GRÜNE The Greens – The Green Alternative
Die Grünen – Die Grüne Alternative
Green politics
Werner Kogler
14.5%
3 / 18
NEOS NEOS – The New Austria and Liberal Forum
NEOS – The New Austria and Liberal Forum
Liberalism
Pro-Europeanism

Claudia Gamon
8.1%
1 / 18

Seven parties contested the election. In addition to the five already represented in the European Parliament, two more collected enough signatures to appear on the ballot:[2][3]

Facts and statistics


According to final numbers, a total of 6,416,202 people aged 16+ are eligible to vote in this election, an increase from 6,410,602 people in the 2014 election. 3,312,745 women (2014: 3,322,498) and 3,103,457 men (2014: 3,088,104) are eligible to vote. Included in these totals are 44,718 Austrians living abroad and 38,668 foreign EU-citizens living in Austria.[4]

Poll opening and closing times on election day are set individually by each municipality. Poll closing times can be no later than 5 pm. Results will be released at 11 pm (after Italy closes their polls).

Voters are allowed to cast their vote by postal ballot. Postal ballots have to arrive at the district voting commission no later than 5 pm on election day and will be counted on Monday, 27 May – starting at 9 am.

A total of 686,249 postal ballots have been requested by voters, up from 444,057 – an increase of 55% – compared with the 2014 election.[5]

Campaign


In the lead up to the 2019 European Parliament election in Austria, in what The Guardian described as "doubling down" on rhetoric ahead of the election,[6] FPO Vice Chancellor of Austria Heinz-Christian Strache endorsed the far-right conspiracy of the great replacement.[7] He claimed that "population replacement" was real, adding: "We don’t want to become a minority in our own country".[8]

Ibiza affair


The Ibiza affair (German: Ibiza-Affäre), also known as Ibiza-gate,[9] is an ongoing political scandal in Austria involving Heinz-Christian Strache, the former Vice-Chancellor of Austria and leader of the Freedom Party (FPÖ), Johann Gudenus, a deputy leader of the Freedom Party, and both the Austrian Freedom Party and Austria's political landscape in general.

The scandal started on 17 May 2019 with the publication of a secretly recorded video of a meeting in Ibiza, Spain, in July 2017, which appears to show the then opposition politicians Strache and Gudenus discussing their party's underhanded practices and intentions.[10][11][12] In the video, both politicians appeared receptive to proposals by a woman posing as the niece of a Russian oligarch, discussing how to provide the FPÖ with positive news coverage in return for government contracts. Strache and Gudenus also hinted at corrupt political practices involving numerous other wealthy donors to the FPÖ in Europe and elsewhere.

The scandal caused the resignation of Strache and Gudenus, the collapse of the Austrian governing ÖVP-FPÖ coalition on 18 May 2019 and the announcement of an early legislative election in September.[13][14][15]

Opinion polls


Graphical summary

Vote share

Polling firm Fieldwork date Sample
size
ÖVP SPÖ FPÖ Greens NEOS JETZT KPÖ+/
Others
Lead
2019 election 26 May 2019 34.6 23.9 17.2 14.1 8.4 1.0 0.8 10.7
SORA/ARGE Wahlen/Hajek 21–26 May 2019 5,200 34.5 23.5 17.5 13.5 8 2 1 11
Research Affairs 9–15 May 2019 1,000 29 27 23 8 9 2 2 2
Unique Research/Peter Hajek 29 Apr–9 May 2019 2,405 30 27 23 10 8 1 1 3
OGM 29 Apr–2 May 2019 860 30.5 27.5 24.5 7 7 1.5 2 3
Research Affairs 25 Apr–1 May 2019 1,002 29 27 23 7 10 2 2 2
Research Affairs 11–17 Apr 2019 1,007 29 27 22 7 10 2 3 2
Market 12–15 Apr 2019 803 30 28 20 8 9 2 3 2
Research Affairs 28 Mar–3 Apr 2019 1,001 29 26 22 8 9 3 3 3
INSA 28 Mar–1 Apr 2019 1,000 28 28 25 9 6 2 2 Tie
Research Affairs 14–20 Mar 2019 1,002 28 26 23 8 8 3 4 2
Research Affairs 26 Feb–6 Mar 2019 1,001 28 26 23 9 9 2 3 2
INSA 27 Feb–1 Mar 2019 1,000 29 25 24 9 8 2 3 4
Market 18–20 Feb 2019 804 30 25 21 8 11 2 3 5
Research Affairs 13–20 Feb 2019 1,005 27 26 23 7 9 3 5 1
27 26 23 9[lower-alpha 1] 9 2 4 1
Research Affairs 31 Jan–6 Feb 2019 1,002 27 26 22 7 10 4 4 1
Research Affairs 17–23 Jan 2019 1,002 27 26 22 8 9 3 5 1
Research Affairs 3–9 Jan 2019 1,002 27 26 23 8 9 2 5 1
Research Affairs 6–12 Dec 2018 1,001 27 26 23 7 9 2 6 1
Research Affairs 22–28 Nov 2018 1,001 27 26 24 7 8 3 5 1
Research Affairs 8–14 Nov 2018 1,001 27 26 24 7 8 3 5 1
Research Affairs 11–17 Oct 2018 1,001 27 26 24 6 9 3 5 1
Research Affairs 27 Sep–3 Oct 2018 1,003 27 28 23 5 9 2 1 1
Research Affairs 19–20 Sep 2018 506 28 28 24 5 9 1 5 Tie
Research Affairs 30 Aug–5 Sep 2018 1,002 28 27 24 5 9 2 5 1
2014 election 25 May 2014 27.0 24.1 19.7 14.5 8.1 6.5 2.9

Results


The numbers in brackets denote changes in seat distribution caused by Brexit.

Party EU Party Group Votes  % +/− Seats +/−
Austrian People's Party (ÖVP) EPP EPP 1,305,956 34.55 +7.57 7 +2
Social Democratic Party of Austria (SPÖ) PES S&D 903,151 23.89 –0.20 5 ±0
Freedom Party of Austria (FPÖ) EAPN ID 650,114 17.20 –2.52 3 –1
The Greens – The Green Alternative (GRÜNE) EGP G/EFA 532,193 14.08 –0.44 2 (3) –1 (±0)
NEOS – The New Austria (NEOS) ALDE RE 319,024 8.44 +0.30 1 ±0
EUROPE NOW! – Initiative Johannes Voggenhuber (EUROPA) None N/A 39,239 1.04 New 0 New
KPÖ Plus – European Left, Open List (KPÖ) PEL N/A 30,087 0.80 New 0 ±0
Invalid/blank votes 54,898
Total 3,834,662 100 18 (19) 0
Registered voters/turnout 6,416,177 59.76 +14.37
Source: Austrian Interior Ministry

Results by state

State ÖVP SPÖ FPÖ Grüne NEOS Europa KPÖ+ Turnout
 Burgenland35.433.017.57.85.20.70.466.2
 Carinthia28.930.421.69.97.70.90.652.1
 Lower Austria40.122.317.810.57.80.90.667.2
 Upper Austria35.125.018.113.47.00.80.662.1
 Salzburg43.118.214.514.18.31.10.757.8
 Styria35.721.419.713.37.80.91.156.7
 Tyrol42.615.515.216.38.81.00.653.2
 Vorarlberg34.613.514.118.817.31.20.653.0
 Vienna21.430.314.420.810.21.61.358.7
 Austria34.623.917.214.18.41.00.859.8
Source: Austrian Interior Ministry

Notes


  1. With Sarah Wiener as second candidate on the list

References


  1. "Austria far-right leader ramps up anti-immigration rhetoric before European elections". Reuters. 5 May 2019. Retrieved 7 May 2019.[dead link]
  2. Parteien die kandidieren, Bewerberinnen und Bewerber, bmi.gv.at, 8 May 2019
  3. Amtlicher Stimmzettel (PDF), bmi.gv.at, 8 May 2019
  4. Europawahl 2019 – Endgültige Zahl der Wahlberechtigten (PDF), bmi.gv.at, 8 May 2019
  5. Zahl der ausgestellten Wahlkarten (PDF), bmi.gv.at, 25 May 2019
  6. "Austrian deputy leader endorses far-right term 'population replacement'". The Guardian. 29 April 2019.
  7. "Austria far-right leader panned for use of 'population replacement' term". The Times of Israel. 1 May 2019.
  8. "Austrian far-right sticks by 'population exchange' rhetoric". Reuters. 1 May 2019.
  9. "Austria's 'Ibiza-gate' video: What we know". France 24. Agence France-Presse. 23 May 2019. Archived from the original on 24 May 2019. Retrieved 24 May 2019.
  10. "Austrian government plunged into crisis over 'Ibiza affair'". France 24. Agence France-Presse. 18 May 2019. Archived from the original on 20 May 2019. Retrieved 20 May 2019.
  11. Groendahl, Boris (18 May 2019). "Austria's Nationalist Vice Chancellor Quits Over Video Scandal". Bloomberg. Archived from the original on 19 May 2019. Retrieved 20 May 2019.
  12. Schuetze, Christopher F. (18 May 2019). "Highlights From the Video That Brought Down Austria's Vice Chancellor". The New York Times. Archived from the original on 18 May 2019. Retrieved 20 May 2019.
  13. "Austria chancellor calls for snap election after corruption scandal". BBC News. Archived from the original on 18 May 2019. Retrieved 18 May 2019.
  14. Bennhold, Katrin; Schuetze, Christopher F. (18 May 2019). "Austrian Leader Calls for Snap Election After Far-Right Vice Chancellor Resigns". The New York Times. ISSN 0362-4331. Archived from the original on 18 May 2019. Retrieved 18 May 2019.
  15. Noack, Rick; Mekhennet, Souad (18 May 2019). "Austrian chancellor calls for new elections after leader of far-right ally resigns in scandal". The Washington Post. Archived from the original on 18 May 2019. Retrieved 18 May 2019.