EU Warns Against Hofer Victory

The New Observer
May 7, 2016

European Parliament President Martin Schulz has issued an official warning against Austria if it dares to elect the Freedom Party’s (FPÖ) Norbert Hofer on May 22.

Opinion polls show Hofer and his opponent, the Green-communist party’s Alexander Van der Bellen, at 50 percent each in the race.



Schulz, a veteran Socialist Party of Germany (SPD) politician, said that “Europe’s character will be changed if the extremist right wins the elections in Austria.”

Speaking during a radio interview with the Italian channel RAI 3, Schulz called on all those who oppose Hofer to “mobilize” against him—a blatant attempt at interference in the Austrian political process.

According to the latest Gallup poll, Van der Bellen and Hofer are running head-to-head at 50 percent each. This is a not unexpected outcome, given that Hofer took 35.1 percent (1,499,971 votes) in the first round, and Van der Bellen took 21.3 percent (913,218 votes).

A further 1,865,981 voters chose other parties or independent candidates in the first round. If the Gallup poll is accurate, this means that Van der Bellen has picked up the majority of the votes cast for other candidates in the first round.

The Gallup poll—the first to be done for the second round—said that in its “raw data” format, if the election was held straight away, the FPÖ  would take 43 percent, the Green-communists 42 percent, and 15 percent were undecided.

Of that 15 percent, the Gallup pollsters said, a slim majority has been allocated to Van der Bellen, resulting in their predicted 50-50 split.



Furthermore, the pollsters said, Van der Bellen would take 77 percent of the Socialist Party of Austria’s (SPÖ) first round vote, and 62 percent of conservative Austrian Peoples’ Party (ÖVP) first round voters.

Hofer scored well with previous non-voters, of whom 32 percent said they were definitely going to vote for him. The determination to vote will, Gallup predicted, drive the turnout to a “sensational” 77 percent or more.

It should be borne in mind that the pollsters’ predictions for the first round also claimed that Hofer and Van der Bellen were running neck-and-neck, but in the end result Hofer won that round decisively.

In a related development, Moshe Kantor, president of the European Jewish Congress, described the FPÖ’s first round victory as “deeply troubling” and went on to cite the alleged Jewish holocaust as a reason why Austrians should not oppose the flooding of their country by millions of mainly Muslim nonwhites.

Kantor, of course, supports Israel, which refuses to admit any “refugees,” Muslim or otherwise. It seems that Israel too, has “not learned the lesson of the holocaust.”

In addition, the official body of Jews in the UK, the British Board of Deputies, also voiced its “deep concern” over the FPÖ’s success.