Austrian presidential election are getting a world wide attention. The far-right Freedom Party candidate has come top in the first round of Austrian presidential elections while the candidates from Austria’s two main parties did not make it to the run-off.
Austrian presidential election got worldwide attention. After the results in the first round of presidential election, the journals published the Austrian map colored in blue, the color of the Austrian far-right Freedom party. There were some green spots on it too but only4 Austrian cities and a region at the Swiss border were shining in the color of the green party. The colors red for social democrats and black for conservatives were completely swiped off. For the first time since World War Two, the candidates from Austria’s two main parties did not make it to the run-off. In response to the political shake-up, some entitled the new map of Austrian politics: the second republic has ended.
Austrian presidential election made the biggest political shake-up
Austrian presidential election campaign didn’t run well for the ruling coalition of social democrats and conservatives. Both candidates were experienced, intelligent politicians and they seemed to have the biggest lobbies behind them. What happened then? The reason why the blue won so many votes was the number of qualified candidates running for the election. It sounds like the wrong conclusion, but if you get into the mind of an Austrian voter you will understand.
This time, the voters had to decide between 6 candidates. Polls that were published before the election showed that the candidates of the ruling coalition already had no chance against the blue, green or the independent party. That was why many people opted for tactical voting. They would have voted for their own party, but knowing from the various polls that their candidate would not make it, they voted for another one. Because of this “poll-effect” votes that the independent, the green, and the blue, candidates got were much higher than what the polls even expected. On the other hand, the red and the black candidate lost so many votes that they ended up with Richard Lugner who started his campaign just for fun and to gain publicity for his shopping center.
But the success of the blue candidate was also because he could mobilize those who did not travel or work in places other than their own hometown or country. People hear on their TV from the morning (in their car´s radio on the way to work) until the evening,news about bad things that happened around the world. It is like a promotion clip for the Freedom Party. And such promotion came from newspapers and channels of every color. The slogan of the blue ones was: We know what we have to do if we get elected.
Austrian Presidential Election: the Right Wing vs. the Left Wing
The green candidate – a former university professor – used a slogan of the right wing party against their inventors and got with it the second place and a chance to get president. His posters were titled: “Homeland”.
But let us go back to the news producers and their responsibility. There is the right of freedom of press, and even some countries (Hungary) and private persons (Italy and England) have already had quite a huge influence on national news,but where is the right that protects the people from seeing dead babies at a beach.
Do we really need to see dead corpses every day? Does it mean that we should shut our eyes if we don’t want to watch it on an HD TV? Even the movie industry has a code not to show the cruel scenes to underaged people.
The “wing parties” are promising us a solution of the problems we see on TV if we just make the cross next to their names. The left wing says: Open the borders and they will enrich our culture. The right wing argues : If we close the borders they won’t go on the dangerous journey anymore and there will be no islamisation. The constructive work that the social democrats and the conservatives have already done (development aid in the origin countries and to control the migration) was a completely cut off in the voters’ minds. They made their choice. But it takes more than to tick off the voting ballot on an Election Day.
Democracy only works if you participate actively in your village, your state and your continent. Everyone has to know that he/she is part of the system. The problem is that the majority of the people are still thinking national instead of rational. Going on the street and shouting slogans may help show a problem but it is not solving it.
Austrian presidential election phenomenon is not a regional phenomenon.
The western world is confronted with a financial crisis, migration crises, and also with political crises because no one seems to be responsible for politics. The problem is not the rise of votes for the right or left wings. The problem is the polarization, the used words against each other and the drifting apart of the common solution no matter which topic.
Another poll showed that most of their votes came from people without a university degree or without a higher school education. Did the right wing win because of lack of education? That seems impossible as Europe claims it has one of the best education standards in the world.
But history has told us that crisis could also be opportunities. People have to learn that they are sitting in the same boat.
It will be the climate change that will cause more migration and then it will be this issue that will change voters’ mind.. So should Austrians vote for the green candidate? The economy also causes this. And as economy seemed to be better in the old times when there were tolls and the national economy was protected by law…So should they vote for the Freedom party?
The right wing phenomenon is not a regional phenomenon. Not only Austria is struggling with the loss of the established ruling parties. Outside its borders, right wing and left wing parties seem to have “wings” as well. It is easier to count the countries that still have governments standing for the people between left and right than counting the countries who are not. This problem is not an Austrian or European one. It is a worldwide thing, best seen in the Trump phenomenon in the United States, that shows such problems not exclusive to Austria.