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Pro-Russian FPÖ leader Herbert Kickl. Wikipedia/ÖVP MEP Michael Obermoser. Facebook

A political shift in Austria

A political earthquake is threatening Austria. The ÖVP continues to drop in the polls and is now in third place. The FPÖ can establish itself in second place under its pro-Russian chairman Herbert Kickl. Another disastrous result for the Chancellor's Party, after the governing coalition of the ÖVP and the Greens lost the majority in the polls months ago.

Published: July 3, 2022, 2:37 pm

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    The bad news for the formerly black and now turquoise People’s Party continues. The voters are leaving in droves. This was clearly shown by a survey conducted by the Lazarsfeld Society for Social Research with 2000 respondents in the 25th and 26th calendar week, with a fluctuation margin of only 2,24 percent.

    According to the survey, the SPÖ is still in first place with 31 percent, followed by the FPÖ with 22 percent. This is followed by the Chancellor’s party with 21 percent and the small coalition partner the Greens with 10 percent as well as the Neos with 9 percent. The MFG stands at 4 percent and could possibly also make it into the National Council.

    Chancellor does not care about Austrians

    For Chancellor Karl Nehammer, however, the poll is another disaster. After SPÖ Chancellor Christian Kern, he could become the second head of government who was never elected by the people but was clearly voted out of office. And it also abundantly makes clear how Austrians “approve” of the chancellor’s actions.

    Instead of taking care of Austria, the chancellor prefers to jet around the world. He cuddles up to the Klitschko brothers from Ukraine and dines at the NATO meeting, although as head of government of a neutral state he has no business in either of these countries.

    Meanwhile, there is hardly enough to live on because of the inflation and in Carinthia a national state of emergency has been declared after storms. The chancellor’s status in the poll clearly shows that citizens directly attribute the mismanagement of various crises to Nehammer.

    When asked whether Karl Nehammer should remain chancellor, only 28 percent said “yes”, but 43 percent responded with an unequivocal “no”. Twenty-nine percent answered “don’t know” or gave no answer.

    Third place for ÖVP nothing new

    While the FPÖ with 22 percent achieved its strongest poll result since the Ibiza scandal, third place for the ÖVP is a drop back to the pre-Kurz era.

    Already under Wolfgang Schüssel, the ÖVP had to be content with third place before it went into government with the then Haider-FPÖ and the later BZÖ. Also in the Mitterlehner era in 2017, the People’s Party had to settle for third place in polls behind the second-ranking SPÖ and the FPÖ. Only the appearance of the “miracle” Sebastian Kurz ended the ÖVP’s slide. However, whether this was really due to Kurz, his adoption of FPÖ themes or merely manipulated polls or a melange of all of the aforementioned, is not clear.

    Ridiculous anti-inflation measures

    A meeting in the Salzburg state parliament is currently causing a stir after a representative of the Chancellor’s party showed how disconnected the black-turquoise party was.

    In facing inflation, ÖVP MEP Michael Obermoser from Pinzgau recommended that citizens tighten their belts by giving up gambling, games and phones: “We invest ten percent of our national income in games, gambling and lotteries. Another ten percent goes into airtime and all that stuff. Every single one of us has the chance to do something and more or less and change that.”

    The meeting in question took place at the beginning of the month and a video of his proposal has gone viral. The excerpt is only 20 seconds long, but it packs a punch. It is not the dolt of the local pub rambling on but supposedly a political professional and elected official who, in addition to his political functions, is also the district chairman of the ÖVP economic association in the Zell am See district.

    Sharp criticism came from FPÖ boss Kickl writing on Facebook: “Mr. Obermoser, on which planet do you actually live? The Austrians can no longer afford to live due to the fatal policies of your ÖVP-led federal government and you come up with such idiotic ‘tips’.”

    What is clear, however, is that the citizens are fed up with the ÖVP and its scandals. In addition, there is also the party’s lack of a vision, as it is merely concerned about how to retain power in order to continue distributing money and posts to members. After all, the countless empty announcements and broken promises have once again shown Austrians that a collection of unqualified people govern them.

    Be it the protection of the borders, the vaccination lottery or the current comical measures against inflation: People are fed up with the party which apparently regards tax money as its own.

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