Far-Right Parties Witness Popularity Surge in EU, Including Italy

With an eye on seizing control of Brussels, far-right groups are gaining ground in Europe. 

Marine Le Pen and Italian Prime Minister Giorgia Meloni are two examples. 

The far right is currently enjoying a wave of victories in several European countries, including Italy, France, the Netherlands, Austria, and Belgium. They also have a significant impact on the administrations of Finland and Slovakia. 

They have a good chance of getting above 30% of the vote in the European elections taking place from June 6th to the 9th, giving them a significant amount of influence in the European Parliament.

Marine Le Pen, who has spent years trying to distance her party from her father’s radical ideology, is currently the front-runner to succeed her father as president of France in 2027, with the support of roughly 30% of the vote.

It is possible that Giorgia Meloni’s European Conservatives and Reformists (ECR) grouping may reach an agreement with the center-right of Ursula von der Leyen, the president of the European Commission if they perform well in the next elections. The European People’s Party, led by von der Leyen, is expected to emerge as the largest faction. She has indicated her willingness to ally with the ECR, provided that they share her views on Europe, Ukraine, and the rule of law.

In addition to France’s National Rally, the ID group includes the League of Italy, the Freedom Party (FPÖ) of Austria, Geert Wilders’ Freedom Party in the Netherlands, Vlaams Belang in Belgium, and the People’s Party of Denmark. While definitions of far-right parties vary, some, like Marine Le Pen, reject the term.

Many far-right groups continue their long-standing strategy of opposing the European Union (EU) as a supranational power. Despite this, Ms. Meloni’s party has abandoned its once vehement opposition to Brussels, and according to her European Election program, she wants Europe to be a political giant with a leading role internationally. 

In its election campaign, Austria’s Freedom Party (FPÖ) is using the slogan “Stop EU madness” and is using terms like “asylum crisis,” “eco-communism,” and “corona-chaos” to combat the image of Volodymyr Zelenskyy kissing the head of the European Commission.

Discussions amongst the right about exiting the EU are on the decline. Marine Le Pen has always had a dim view of the European Union, and Sweden’s Democratic leader, Jimmie Akesson, has not entirely abandoned the concept.