As Europe moves towards the far right, Britain is doing the opposite
  • Britain has decided to return the Labour Party to power, ending 14 years of Conservative majority rule.

  • The surprising decline of the right in this country runs counter to larger trends in Europe.

  • Germany and France are on the verge of a tipping point for the far right, as countries like Italy have already done.

As the dust settles from the UK general election, it is clear that the Conservative Party has suffered a major defeat.

The results of the July 4 election were a dramatic rebuke to the incumbent Conservative leadership that has been in power for 14 years. Chancellor Rishi SunakOnce the counting is complete, the party will have lost more than 240 seats.

Mr. Sunak He conceded defeat on Friday morning UK time.likely to replace him as Labour leader Keir Starmer.

Starmer has spent more than a decade trying to reshape the left-wing party into a more centrist one, rejecting socialist elements including its leader, Jeremy Corbyn.

Often seen as a hard-nosed, programmatic politician, he has strengthened the weaknesses of the health care system; Renegotiate the UK’s withdrawal agreement with the EU He said it “failed.”

Labour’s rise, widely predicted in pre-election polls, has made Britain a clear outlier in this year’s political upheaval in Western Europe.

June’s European Parliament elections saw far-right forces gain power in major European countries, and as a result, the power long held by left-wing governments is crumbling.

Germany’s Scholz Rejecting early elections

Germany’s Alternative for Germany (AfD) Alice Weidel and Tino Kurpalahas overtaken Chancellor Olaf Scholz’s Social Democrats in EU opinion polls despite losing its main candidate and battling a series of scandals.

Tino Krupalla and Alice Weidel, co-leaders of the far-right Alternative for Germany (AfD) party, celebrate at an AfD election eve rally after the announcement of the first round results of the 2024 European Parliament elections in Berlin, Germany, on June 9, 2024.

Tino Krupalla and Alice Weidel, co-chairs of the far-right Alternative for Germany (AfD) party, celebrated in Berlin on June 9, 2024.Sean Gallup/Getty Images

now 2nd place: 16% Far-right parties in Germany saw the results as a sign that public support had tipped in their favour and called for national elections in the country. But Scholz I rejected the idea.

French President Macron in crisis

For France and its president, it’s a different story. Emmanuel MacronThe Renaissance Party won just 14.6% of the vote in the European Parliament elections.

Macron called for snap parliamentary elections after Marine Le Pen’s far-right National Rally became France’s largest party with 31.3% of the vote.

Marine Le Pen, parliamentary leader of the French far-right Région National (RN) party, casts her vote in the first round of parliamentary elections in Hénin-Beaumont, northern France, on June 30, 2024.Marine Le Pen, parliamentary leader of the French far-right Région National (RN) party, casts her vote in the first round of parliamentary elections in Hénin-Beaumont, northern France, on June 30, 2024.

Marine Le Pen, June 30, 2024.François Lo Presti/AFP via Getty Images

The first round of the French election ended on Sunday with the results Le Pen faction has a big lead of left-wing and center-right opponents.

A second round of voting is scheduled for July 7 and preparations for it have turned into a chaotic effort to stop far-right forces from seizing power.

Hundreds of candidates withdrawThey are trying to avoid splitting the vote between centrists and the left.

Meanwhile, Macron’s approval rating has fallen to its lowest point during his seven years in office. Inconspicuous.

Italian Brothers Win Endorsements

In Italy, the far right has already consolidated power in the form of a prime minister. Giorgia Meloni’s The ultra-conservative Italian Brothers party became the ruling party in 2022.

Prime Minister Giorgia Meloni and Minister for European Affairs, Cohesion Policy and PNRR Raffaele Fito during the Communication of the President of the Council in the Senate Chamber, looking ahead to the European Council meeting on 27 and 28 June 2024.Prime Minister Giorgia Meloni and Minister for European Affairs, Cohesion Policy and PNRR Raffaele Fito during the Communication of the President of the Council in the Senate Chamber, looking ahead to the European Council meeting on 27 and 28 June 2024.

Giorgia Meloni in June 2024.Massimo Di Vita/Archivio Massimo Di Vita/Mondadori Portfolio via Getty Images

As a symptom maintain her support for her political partyIn June’s European Parliament elections, the party won around 29% of the national vote, up from 6% in 2019.

The runner-up was the Democratic Party, which won 24.1% of the Italian vote.

Elsewhere, many European countries are moving to the right. Spanish National PartyThe centre-right coalition won 34% of the country’s votes in the European Parliament, defeating the socialist government of current Prime Minister Pedro Sánchez.

Still, the local far-right faction, Vox, struggled to make a foothold, with its share of the vote falling to 9.6% from 12.4% in 2019.

Netherlands The country has also just formed a right-wing government, the strongest of which is the anti-immigration, populist Freedom Party led by Geert Wilders.

Indeed, right-wing populism in the UK is showing more visible signs. At the time of writing: Nigel FarageReform UK won nothing in 2019, but did gain four seats.

Farage, the man who led the Brexit campaign, has finally been elected as an MP. In Clacton he received 46% of the vote.

Reform UK Party leader Nigel Farage addresses the crowd as he arrives in a Land Rover to deliver a street speech to his supporters in Clacton-on-Sea, England, on July 3, 2024.Reform UK Party leader Nigel Farage addresses the crowd as he arrives in a Land Rover to deliver a street speech to his supporters in Clacton-on-Sea, England, on July 3, 2024.

Nigel Farage, leader of the UK Reform Party, on July 3, 2024.Dan Kitwood/Getty Images

The dramatic change in opinion polls comes amid growing contempt for the economic challenges facing much of the continent, including soaring living costs and inflation.

Some observers believe that this change Pure anti-establishment sentimentVoters blame those in power, whether they are left or right.

“There’s a lot of dissatisfaction with the way our democracy works,” said Richard Weick, director of international opinion polls at the Pew Research Center. FiveThirtyEight’s June Politics Podcast.

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