The rise of the far right and the fragmentation of parliament – Euractiv FR

The rise of the far right and the fragmentation of parliament – Euractiv FR

Portuguese voters did not respond to calls for elections “Helpful vote” In the legislative elections that took place on Sunday (March 10), which produced the most divided parliament ever and made the far-right Chiga the biggest winner, according to political experts who spoke to Losaa partner of Euractiv.

The Portuguese went to the polls on Sunday to hold early legislative elections after the resignation of Socialist Prime Minister Antonio Costa.

According to results published at the time of writing, the centre-right Democratic Alliance (AD) – a coalition between the PSD (PPE), CDS-PP (PPE) and PPM (the monarchists) – is leading by 29.5%. Of the votes, it won 79 legislators out of 230 seats in the Portuguese Legislative Council.

“The Democratic Party won the elections”Democratic Alliance leader Luis Montenegro told his supporters early Monday morning (March 11), calling on other political parties to… “Compliance with the will of the Portuguese people”mentioned Reuters.

According to data from the General Secretariat of the Ministry of the Interior – Electoral Administration and Elections for Europe, the Socialists (PS) come in second place with 28.7% (77 seats), while the far-right Chiga party comes in third place, with 18.1% (48 seats).

Consequently, the weight of the far-right party, which won 12 seats, quadrupled within the Portuguese Assembly.

During the previous legislative session, the Socialists enjoyed an absolute majority.

According to official figures, 66.24% of registered voters cast their votes in Sunday's elections, which represents the lowest percentage of abstention from voting in the past twenty years.

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The most divided parliament ever

“It is a result that shows that the Portuguese did not heed the call for a meaningful vote and decided to vote honestly because we now have the most divided parliament ever. We have to go back to 1985 to find an election in which the PSOE and the PSOE together got less than 64%.Political scientist Marina Costa Lobo told Lusa.

“This creates a huge amount of uncertainty, a period of uncertainty not only in terms of instability but also in terms of the formation of the government.”Marina Costa Lobo, a researcher at the Institute of Social Sciences at the University of Lisbon (ICS-UL), said while the results have not yet been finalized, the results of the circuits abroad have not yet been determined.

According to official figures, 66.24% of registered voters cast their votes in Sunday's elections, which represents the lowest percentage of abstention from voting in the past twenty years. However, Costa Lobo confirmed that Sunday's elections were well attended. Unlike 2022, where the Socialist Party obtained an absolute majority thanks to… “A useful vote to avoid a right-wing majority“.

This time the Portuguese decided so “Giving political leaders and parliamentarians the opportunity to form alliances.”

She added that these alliances will not only depend on who will form the government, but also on who will form it “The work of the President of the Republic and the behavior of the parties.”

Central block to isolate Chiga?

The political scientist noted that more than a million Portuguese voted for Chiga, which became a vote “The solid power that will determine the work of the Council of the Republic.”

She stressed that it remains to be seen whether the Socialist Party and the Social Democratic Party will support each other by opposing and removing Andrei Ventura, the leader of Chega, or whether we will move towards an agreement. “Strengthening the polarization between the left and the right, by leaving the PSD to Chiga and not building bridges between the left and the right.”

For his part, Mr. Ventura said that the vote took place on Sunday “It clearly showed that the Portuguese want an AD government with Mr. Chiga”.

As for the role of President Marcelo Rebelo de Sousa, Marina Costa Lobo estimated that if the Socialist Party wins in terms of states, it will be “A very big disappointment for the President of the Republic” . And against Chiga, the head of state “We will do our best to reach a center bloc agreement.”This excludes this party, she believes.

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The President of the Republic called for elections in November 2023 after the resignation of Prime Minister Antonio Costa, refusing to grant the Socialist Party, which had an absolute majority in Parliament, the possibility of appointing a new head of government.

Antonio Costa Pinto, a researcher at ICS-UL, sees this “Shiga is the biggest winner of the night.”which was able not only to grow, but to organize itself at the national level thanks to the homogeneity of the national distribution of the mandates obtained “Because it is a condition for M’s victory.”

Regarding the government formation scenarios, the researcher believes that the most likely is that the Democratic Alliance will form a coalition government with the Liberal Initiative, assuming that the PSD/CDS-PP/PPM coalition ultimately has more representatives than the Socialist Party.

“Portugal is used to having minority governments. The new thing is Chiga, which is actually an anti-system party and has grown a lot.António Costa Pinto emphasized, predicting that a coalition of the left is unlikely in the short term if the Christian Democratic Party has a larger number of deputies.

The Secretary-General of the Socialist Party announced early Monday morning that he would lead the opposition and not support the government in Parliament.

Shiga's rise in Portugal reflects a general trend across the European Union in the run-up to the European elections in June. According to forecasts by “Europe's Elect”, the European far right should be the third political force in the new European Parliament.

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