MAGA figures say far-right victories in Europe are good news for Trump. Are they right?

The elections were held abroad, but for members of the MAGA movement, the right-wing trend in the European Parliament was still a chance to claim victory.

Steven K. Bannon, who managed former President Trump’s 2016 campaign and served as a senior adviser at the White House, compared this week’s election results to British voters’ decision in June 2016 to leave the European Union – a historic decision that preceded Trump’s surprise. five-month victory.

“Absolutely, moving tectonic plates,” Bannon said on his podcast Monday.

The European Union and the United States have very different political systems and practices, including the formation of multi-party coalitions underway in Europe.

But there are some important lessons for the United States.

Who won the European Parliament election?

Centrists won a clear overall victory in the 27-member European Union. The center-right European People’s Party Ursula von der Leyen, president of the bloc’s European Commission, won the most seats of the 720 members of Parliament, according to preliminary results.

But the extreme right made significant gains, winning around 20% of parliamentary seats. To secure a second term, von der Leyen has hinted she might seek a coalition alliance with the Italian Brotherhood, Prime Minister Giorgia Meloni’s party with neo-fascist roots.

The ultranationalist Alternative for Germany has become the country’s second-largest political party, ahead of German Chancellor Olaf Scholz’s party.

Learn more: In Europe, even if the “center holds”, the extreme right is on the rise

French President Emmanuel Macron called early elections after the far-right National Rally won twice as many seats as his own party. Belgian Prime Minister Alexander De Croo resigned after his party was also defeated.

However, not all 27 EU countries have achieved such spectacular results.

“I don’t think Europe has completely changed its character,” said Michael K. Miller, a professor of political science and international affairs at George Washington University. “It is essentially a re-election and a reaffirmation of the center right” and “a shift towards the far right, but not the far right which wins everything”.

Why are Trump supporters so enthusiastic?

Immigration, inflation and rejection of the mainstream – Trump’s favorite themes – have all played a role in the rise of the far right in Europe.

“You can’t deny that there’s something happening in America, in Europe,” Matt Schlapp, who heads the Conservative Political Action Conference, said of events in the United States, Hungary and elsewhere that promote right-wing populism. “The themes are 80% the same. »

But the far right won only about 20% of seats in Parliament, not a majority, making it difficult to analogize to a Trump victory in the U.S. two-party system, which requires an electoral majority, said Andrew Gawthorpe, professor at Leiden University. in the Netherlands who researches American politics.

Should President Is Biden worried?


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