EU Elections: The Winners and the Losers

EU Elections: The Winners and the Losers

Supporters of French right-wing National Rally react at the party election night headquarters in Paris on June 9, 2024. (AP Photo/Lewis Joly)

Ella Kietlinska

Ella Kietlinska

6/9/2024

Updated: 6/10/2024

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After polls closed in all European Union countries, the center-right group in the European Parliament that currently holds the most seats gained the most, while the centrist Renew Europe group and the Greens group lost the most seats in the union’s parliament.
Right-wing parties didn’t quite make the substantial gains that were predicted.
The largest political group in the European Parliament, the center-right European People’s Party, gained 10 seats, according to the early counts released by the European Parliament as of 4:20 p.m. on June 10. The preliminary counts also identified the biggest losers as Renew Europe, losing 23 seats, and the Greens/European Free Alliance, losing 18 seats.
The number of members of the European Parliament (MEPs) not affiliated with any political group decreased by 17.
Voters also elected 55 new MEPs who were not allied to any of the political groups of the outgoing Parliament, according to early counts. They will have an opportunity to join any existing political group, form new groups, or stay unaffiliated, according to an EU spokesperson.
The EU requires that at least 23 MEPs representing one-quarter of EU nations must come together to form a political group.
Two right-wing groups, European Conservatives and Reformists (ECR) and Identity and Democracy parties, gained four and nine seats, respectively.
A left-wing group called The Left in the European Parliament lost one seat.
The total voter turnout in all EU countries, estimated at about 11 p.m. local time, was 51 percent, according to a European Parliament spokesperson.
The elections began on June 6 and ended late on June 9. The last polling stations closed in Italy at 11 p.m. local time.

New European Parliament

The new parliament will consist of 720 seats because of demographic changes in EU member countries, while the outgoing European Parliament, elected in 2019, was made up of 705 members.
“Following the elections, France, Spain, and The Netherlands will each get two additional seats, while Austria, Denmark, Belgium, Poland, Finland, Slovakia, Ireland, Slovenia, and Latvia are attributed one extra seat each,” the EU Parliament said in a statement.
The MEPs are organized by their political affiliation, not by nationality, according to the parliament website. MEPs who belong to a political group cannot be forced to vote in a particular way.
Overall, across the EU, two mainstream and pro-European groups, the Christian Democrats and the Socialists, remain the dominant forces.

National Results

The star of a stunning electoral night was the right-wing French National Rally party of Marine Le Pen, which dominated the French polls to such an extent that French President Emmanuel Macron immediately dissolved the national parliament and called for a new election.
Ms. Le Pen’s party is estimated to have won more than 30 percent of the vote, or about twice as much as the coalition that includes Mr. Macron’s Renaissance party, which is projected to reach less than 15 percent of support.
“We’re ready to turn the country around, ready to defend the interests of the French, ready to put an end to mass immigration,” Ms. Le Pen said.
Her party can potentially gain 12 seats in the European Parliament.
With almost all ballots counted, Italian Prime Minister Giorgia Meloni’s conservative Brothers of Italy party is predicted to win about 28 percent of the vote, more than four times what it took in the last EU election in 2019 and exceeding the 26 percent it secured in the 2022 national ballot when it rose to power.
The party is allied with the right-wing ECR parliamentarian group and is expected to gain 14 seats in the European Parliament.
Its opposition center-left Democratic Party is predicted to get 24 percent of the vote, while another opposition group, the Five Star Movement, came third with nearly 10 percent, according to the parliament’s projection.
Alice Weidel (C) and Tino Chrupalla (center R), both AfD federal chairmen, cheer at the AfD party headquarters during the forecast for the European elections, in Berlin on June 9, 2024. (Joerg Carstensen/dpa via AP)

Alice Weidel (C) and Tino Chrupalla (center R), both AfD federal chairmen, cheer at the AfD party headquarters during the forecast for the European elections, in Berlin on June 9, 2024. (Joerg Carstensen/dpa via AP)

In Germany, the right-wing party Alternative for Germany (AfD) shrugged off scandals to take second place in the election, making gains in particular among young voters, while Chancellor Olaf Scholz’s Social Democratic Party scored its worst-ever result.
The AfD was up by 12 percentage points to 17 percent among 16- to 24-year-olds, tying with the German Conservative Party as the most popular party in that age group and in the former Communist East.
The party will likely gain six seats in the European Parliament but is not allied with any political group.
Mr. Scholz’s Social Democratic Party (SPD) and the third coalition partner, the pro-business Free Democratic Party (FDP), also underperformed; expected to win 14 percent and 5.2 percent of the vote respectively, down from 15.8 percent and 5.4 percent in the last election.
The SPD is projected to lose two seats in the European Parliament, while the FDP will likely retain its five seats.
Reuters and The Associated Press contributed to this report.
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Ella Kietlinska

Ella Kietlinska

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Ella Kietlinska is an Epoch Times reporter covering U.S. and world politics.

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