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23.10.11 0010
The 7 - Current Events & Politics - Anti-Integration Parties thrive in EU elections
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Grimis
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#1 Posted on 14.6.04 1022.55
Reposted on: 14.6.11 1024.22
From the AP
    Originally posted by The AP
    The parties of French President Jacques Chirac and German Chancellor Gerhard Schroeder suffered losses to opposition parties in European Parliament elections yesterday that also saw a surge in support for so-called Euro-skeptic parties.

I'd like to ask the Europeans that frequent the politics section whether or not this broad based anti-EU sentiment or just a reaction against the ruling parties in the particular member states. I have seen and heard in other sources that the majority of the new members of the Parliament are anti-integration...
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Jonny_English
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#2 Posted on 14.6.04 1218.19
Reposted on: 14.6.11 1218.50
I think for the most part, in Britain at least, the high vote for the UK Independence party is a bit of a knee-jerk. The party has no great depth behind its stance of withdrawing the UK from the EU.

In the UK we have some of the highest taxes in Europe, and a high cost of living. Our public transport system is in disarray, it is widely acknowledged that the NHS and our schools could do better, and crime is high (in certain cities, gun crime is reaching shocking levels, for the UK). Also, the UK tabloids do a great job of scaremongering about immigration and "rule from Brussels". Heaven forbid that the British public should discover that we have the 8th highest immigration in Europe (behind Austria and Armenia), as opposed to the locust-like hordes coming to rape our fair isle of all that is good (as the tabloids portray). Another key issue for UK voters is the idea of scrapping the pound in favour of the euro. Many people see the pound as a strong symbol of our national identity. Although Tony Blair has set down a number of economic tests to determine when it would be appropriate for us to make this transition, I think the British public just don't trust this guy anymore (the Labour Party lost 479 seats in last weeks local council elections).

My take on it is that people here are a little scared and a little pissed off. The traditional vote for the Euro-skeptic would have been Conservative, but many feel that the Conservative party isn't Euro-skeptic enough. I don't think that this particularly indicates a popular rise in European nationalism, or at least I hope it doesn't. IMHO, the electorate are merely sending a message to Blair.
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#3 Posted on 14.6.04 1442.33
Reposted on: 14.6.11 1445.15
Not from Europe but a perspective. When economic times are hard, this stuff happens. When times improve it disappears. See our own 1992 election.

Second. Many of these leaders and their parties have been in power for a while now and decay is natural.
redsoxnation
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#4 Posted on 14.6.04 1452.25
Reposted on: 14.6.11 1453.06
The British do tend to shift the political spectrum early in a century. Last century opened with a strong Liberal Party battling the Conservatives, with Labour being less than what the UK Independence Party is now, only to a generation later having Labour be the strong party with the Liberal Party becoming non-existant. The UK Independence Party could be slowly developing into the alternative for a graying Conservative Party.
Jonny_English
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#5 Posted on 14.6.04 1518.29
Reposted on: 14.6.11 1519.06
I don't know if this has ever happened in the US, but our two main political parties have become so similar that hey are almost indistinguishable. People often joke that Tony Blair is the best Conservative prime minister we've ever had. I don't forsee strong showing from the UKIP in the Euro elections translating into a strong showing in next years general election. Off topic slightly, but still relevant to the nationalistic overtones in the Euro results, is that the British National Party, which believes in purging the UK of LEGAL immigrants and refers to our close relationship with the US as "spineless subservience", had a piss-poor turn out. I'm particularly thankful for that.
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#6 Posted on 14.6.04 1653.48
Reposted on: 14.6.11 1654.40
    Originally posted by Jonny_English
    I don't know if this has ever happened in the US, but our two main political parties have become so similar that hey are almost indistinguishable. People often joke that Tony Blair is the best Conservative prime minister we've ever had. I don't forsee strong showing from the UKIP in the Euro elections translating into a strong showing in next years general election. Off topic slightly, but still relevant to the nationalistic overtones in the Euro results, is that the British National Party, which believes in purging the UK of LEGAL immigrants and refers to our close relationship with the US as "spineless subservience", had a piss-poor turn out. I'm particularly thankful for that.


To answer your question, IMO, overall our two partis are becoming that way. Clinton went conservative on the debt and welfare reform for example. Bush junior is spending like a Dem (even excluding the war on terror). and supports traditional Dem causes like campaign finance reform and No Child Left Behind.
messenoir
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#7 Posted on 14.6.04 1925.07
Reposted on: 14.6.11 1927.15
I am French, though I no longer live there.

I can say that, though his stance against the Iraqi war had broad based support, Chirac is not a liked person.

He won the last election mainly because the Socialist candidate was in favor of privitization and thus not a true socialist and because of the coming together of all parties against Le Pen.

However, people are not happy with Chirac's push for increased privatization and unpopular reforms in the health care system and the labor market. He's moving the country pretty far from the socialist principles many people in the country support. The Socialist party gained big time in this election, and that's as much a statement about the economy and privitization as the EU.

People also see Chirac as being unlikable, aloof and unresponsive to problems including unemployment and the heat wave last year.

Chirac has also done a poor job explaining and selling the concept of the EU to the French people. The French tend to be pretty prideful people, and many don't see the benefit of banding with other, potentially poorer, countries. Many see a dilution of French culture occuring with the creation of basically a United States of Europe.

I personally support the EU concept, but feel a poor job has been done with the planning and selling of the concept.

So, in response, the low-voter turnout and gains for the Socialist party are a combination of dislike for Chirac, support for Socialist principles and confusion over the EU process.
Grimis
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#8 Posted on 15.6.04 0650.42
Reposted on: 15.6.11 0650.43
Just a thought from a blogger...

    Originally posted by Chrenkoff
    The Euro-election results are in, and it seems that every governing party, with the exception of Spanish Socialist*, is a loser. This is how AP sees the new political landscape:

    "European voters punished leaders in Britain, Italy and the Netherlands for getting involved in Iraq - but also turned their ire on the war's chief opponents German Chancellor Gerhard Schroeder and French President Jacques Chirac over local issues, projections showed Sunday."


    Isn't it nice how the pro-war leaders are punished for their pro-war stance, whereas anti-war leaders are punished over "local issues"? There obviously aren't any local issues in Great Britain, Italy and the Netherlands, but plenty in Germany and France.
spf
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#9 Posted on 15.6.04 1051.04
Reposted on: 15.6.11 1057.20
    Originally posted by Grimis
    Just a thought from a blogger...

      Originally posted by Chrenkoff
      The Euro-election results are in, and it seems that every governing party, with the exception of Spanish Socialist*, is a loser. This is how AP sees the new political landscape:

      "European voters punished leaders in Britain, Italy and the Netherlands for getting involved in Iraq - but also turned their ire on the war's chief opponents German Chancellor Gerhard Schroeder and French President Jacques Chirac over local issues, projections showed Sunday."


      Isn't it nice how the pro-war leaders are punished for their pro-war stance, whereas anti-war leaders are punished over "local issues"? There obviously aren't any local issues in Great Britain, Italy and the Netherlands, but plenty in Germany and France.


I see where you're going with this, but I also think that you're spinning this in a kind of slanted way. You know as well as anyone that in Britain, Italy, and Netherlands those elections were being spun much more in the referendum on Iraq sort of vein. The issue wasn't as prominent in Germany or France because there wasn't the same level of contention between the incumbent party and the populace at large. Basic PoliSci common sense will say that if most people are against a major action of the government, that any national election will hinge on that action. But when there is no overriding bone of contention like that, then yes, elections do become more about local issues, personalities, etc.
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#10 Posted on 15.6.04 1228.24
Reposted on: 15.6.11 1229.01
    Originally posted by spf2119
      Originally posted by Grimis
      Just a thought from a blogger...

        Originally posted by Chrenkoff
        The Euro-election results are in, and it seems that every governing party, with the exception of Spanish Socialist*, is a loser. This is how AP sees the new political landscape:

        "European voters punished leaders in Britain, Italy and the Netherlands for getting involved in Iraq - but also turned their ire on the war's chief opponents German Chancellor Gerhard Schroeder and French President Jacques Chirac over local issues, projections showed Sunday."


        Isn't it nice how the pro-war leaders are punished for their pro-war stance, whereas anti-war leaders are punished over "local issues"? There obviously aren't any local issues in Great Britain, Italy and the Netherlands, but plenty in Germany and France.


    I see where you're going with this, but I also think that you're spinning this in a kind of slanted way. You know as well as anyone that in Britain, Italy, and Netherlands those elections were being spun much more in the referendum on Iraq sort of vein. The issue wasn't as prominent in Germany or France because there wasn't the same level of contention between the incumbent party and the populace at large. Basic PoliSci common sense will say that if most people are against a major action of the government, that any national election will hinge on that action. But when there is no overriding bone of contention like that, then yes, elections do become more about local issues, personalities, etc.


Wasn't it Tip who said all politics is local. Even if the war's the over ridding issue, it's the local impact that matters.
Grimis
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#11 Posted on 15.6.04 1229.35
Reposted on: 15.6.11 1230.13
And I, more than anyone else, understands the local connection. The comment was more about the presentation in the American media moreso than what it all really meant...
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