Final Day of European Parliament Elections: Results Tonight

Estimates from Brussels' portal Politico suggest that the upcoming elections will see a strengthening of far-right parties. These parties are known for their pro-Russian stance and opposition to NATO and European cooperation with the USA

by Sededin Dedovic
Final Day of European Parliament Elections: Results Tonight
© GBNews / Youtube channel

From Thursday, EU citizens will be voting for the tenth time to elect the European Parliament. Around 360 million eligible voters will elect 720 members of parliament across 27 countries. While results are already coming in from early members such as the Netherlands and Ireland, most countries will vote this Sunday (June 9).

This will ultimately determine the election outcome. Each EU member state delegates a certain number of parliament members based on its population, though not entirely proportionally. Germany has the most seats, 96 in total.

Malta, Luxembourg, and Cyprus each have six members.

What are EU citizens interested in?

According to the April Eurobarometer, topics of interest include economic incentives, job creation, and EU defense policy. In Germany, the most important topics are advocating for peace, social care, and immigration.

In many of these areas—such as migration, environmental, and economic policies—the European Parliament is one of the two legislative bodies. New rules are always established in agreement with the EU Council, which represents the 27 member state governments.

There are also areas where the parliament can debate and give opinions extensively, but decisions are exclusively made by the EU Council, such as security and defense policy. The parliament also rarely proposes laws. This is usually done by the European Commission.

Over 70% of Europeans say the EU impacts their daily lives, yet turnout for these elections is traditionally low. Five years ago, turnout exceeded 50% for the first time in a long while. In Germany, turnout was highest at 61%.

This time it might be higher, as voting is allowed from the age of 16, and young people seem motivated.

Allocation of Key Positions

Eight days after the elections, on June 17, EU heads of state and government will gather at a summit in Brussels.

They will discuss who will lead the European Commission. According to European treaties, the European Council nominates candidates for the head of the Commission and its commissioners. The principle of the "lead candidate" is also in effect, whereby the lead candidate of the European party that wins the most seats in the EP should lead the European Commission.

If the member state leaders stick to this principle, Ursula von der Leyen, already in the top Brussels position as a German Christian Democrat, leads the European People's Party in the election campaign.

Ursula von der Leyen© Guardian News / Youtube channel

However, she became the head of the Commission when the state leaders broke this principle.

But, whoever they nominate only needs a simple majority in the European Parliament. In Brussels, there is already talk of forming a new majority in parliament. Von der Leyen said in a TV debate that she would work with MPs who clearly advocate for Europe and the rule of law and support Ukraine.

She included Italy's right-wing Prime Minister Giorgia Meloni in this group. However, she ruled out cooperation with the National Rally of French right-winger Marine Le Pen. Meloni's party leads the European Conservatives and Reformists group, while Le Pen leads the European Identitarians.

Flirting with the right-wing column is not without risk for von der Leyen. She could lose the support of many Social Democrats in the EP by doing so. Estimates by Brussels' Politico portal and the Europe Elects website show that far-right parties will strengthen in the elections, but not enough to influence EU policy.

On the far-right political spectrum are the European Conservatives and Reformists (ECR) and Identity and Democracy (ID) groups. While the ECR group includes parties with national and social conservatism and moderate Euroscepticism, the ID group is characterized by populism and demands to significantly reduce or even dismantle the EU's powers.

The group includes parties that are pro-Russian, anti-immigrant, anti-American, anti-NATO, and against the Green Deal. More leftist ideas in the EP are represented by the Left group, whose orientation ranges from democratic socialism to communism, with mild Euroscepticism.

Politico predicts a moderate drop for this group, from 37 to 32 MPs, while Europe Elects projects they will retain the same number of seats. The two large right-wing party families could collectively have more seats than the European People's Party.

However, they are unlikely to achieve a majority. Politico predicts that the new EP will have as many as 113 MPs who do not belong to any group, while Europe Elects forecasts 79. The new parliament will meet for the first time on July 16 in Strasbourg.

By then, it should be clear which party will join which parliamentary group. About 360 million Europeans have the right to vote in the EP elections, and the new assembly will have 720 MPs, 15 more than the previous one. The number of MPs elected in individual EU member states depends on the number of voters in those countries—the most MPs (96) are from Germany.

The French elect 81 MPs, Italy will have 76, Spain 61, Slovenia and Latvia 9 each, Estonia 7, and the fewest, 6 MPs each, will be from Malta, Cyprus, and Luxembourg.

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