Dem 51
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Europe Moves to the Right in E.U. Election

The European Parliament has 720 seats, making it even bigger than the New Hampshire House (400 seats) and the British House of Commons (650 seats). All of the EU Parliament seats were up for election during the past 4 days. Each country gets a specific number of seats to fill. The algorithm for allocating seats is based on population, but members from small countries get more seats than their population would require. This was necessary to get them to sign up. Sound familiar? Each country can use any election method its own laws provide for. Usually candidates run as members of one of their national parties. The election ran for 4 days. Each country had to choose one of those days for its election.

There are eight major blocs in the Parliament and individual members can attach themselves to whichever they want. The blocs are (roughly) as follows, sorted somewhat on ideology.

The latest projections are as follows. Note that the new Parliament has 15 more seats than the current one:

Projection of the European Parliament election

Members tend to shift around. Nonaligned is a somewhat vague category, so it is hard to pin down who is a "member." But on the whole, the EUP moved to the right, making governing even more difficult than it already is with 27 countries having a veto over everything.

Center-right and right-wing parties are set to be the largest groups in France, Germany, Italy, Poland, and Spain. In France, Marine Le Pen's party got twice as many votes as Emmanuel Macron's party. As a result, he decided to dissolve the French parliament and call for new elections on June 30. This gives the parties 3 weeks to campaign. That ought to be enough. The result could be brutal, though. Immigration is a huge issue in almost every country in the E.U. No one wants immigrants (except employers who want to exploit them). But they keep coming. It is rumored that the E.U. is paying some North African countries tens of millions of euros to allow it to dump immigrants in the Sahara and keep it quiet. At least when Dwight Eisenhower dumped immigrants in the Sonoran Desert in Mexico in Operation Wetback, he took full ownership and was proud of it. Over 1 million immigrants "took part" in the program, none of them voluntarily.

In Germany, the fascist AfD came in second, but still beat Prime Minister Olaf Scholz' party. On a continent that has tried for 80 years to exorcise its past, the past seems to be making a comeback.

The first job of the new parliament will be to elect a president of the European Commission, basically the president of Europe. The current occupant of the job is Ursula von der Leyen (EPP). She is personally quite popular but it is not clear if the votes are there. She will spend the next few days (weeks?) lobbying the Socialists and one or more other blocs for their support. (V)

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