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Majority of Europeans, 62% 'not interested' in the coming European Parliament elections

Saturday, May 10th 2014 - 00:26 UTC
Full article 28 comments
Only 35% of respondents said they would definitely vote, substantially below the 43% average turnout in 2009. Only 35% of respondents said they would definitely vote, substantially below the 43% average turnout in 2009.
Merkel the most recognizable and accepted leader, 51%, followed by PM Cameron with 35%. The least popular, Hollande Merkel the most recognizable and accepted leader, 51%, followed by PM Cameron with 35%. The least popular, Hollande

Six out of 10 Europeans are “not that interested” in the European Parliament elections later this month, according to a poll released ahead of Friday's Europe Day events and despite huge efforts by campaign managers to make the ballot more relevant.

 The survey of nearly 9,000 people in 12 EU countries found 62% were either “not at all” or “not so much” interested in the May 22-25 vote, which will decide the leadership of the European Union for the next five years. Only 35% of respondents said they would definitely vote, substantially below the 43% average turnout at the last election in 2009.

The greatest enthusiasm was registered in Belgium (53%), where voting is required by law, followed by France (44%) and the Netherlands (41%). The lowest was in Britain (27%) and Poland (20%).

Far-right groups are expected to do well or even win the elections in both France and the Netherlands, potentially making them a powerful force in the next European Parliament. The right-wing UKIP party is also expected to do well in Britain.

The survey also provided some interesting views on Europe’s leaders. German Chancellor Angela Merkel was the most recognizable and has the highest approval rating, with 51% either “very positive” or “fairly positive” about her.

Britain’s David Cameron came second, with 35% of those surveyed broadly positive. The least popular was French President Francois Hollande, with only a 20% positive rating and 32% negative - the highest negative score of any European leader by far.

The elections will not only decide the 751 deputies who will sit in the European Parliament from 2014-2019, but more than likely determine who leads the European Commission, the EU executive that holds the right to propose legislation.

Europe’s main political groups - the centre-left Socialists, the centre-right EPP and the Liberals - have each nominated a top candidate for the Commission and hope that if they win, their candidate will become the next Commission president.

But in a worrying sign for all three campaigns, which have worked hard to boost the visibility of their candidates over the past two months, the survey showed more than 60% of people do not know who any of the candidates are.

The survey was conducted by Ipsos-MORI during April. A total of 8,833 people were polled in Belgium, Britain, Croatia, France, Germany, Hungary, Ireland, Italy, the Netherlands, Poland, Spain and Sweden.

Categories: Politics, International.

Top Comments

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  • A_Voice

    Very interesting article....
    “Merkel the most recognizable and accepted leader, 51%, followed by PM Cameron with 35%”
    Looks more like a recognition of power rather than approval.....
    How the tools of global domination have changed....
    Germany doesn't have Nukes, doesn't have much military hardware yet it is the dominant power in Europe.....
    Why aren't people enthusiastic about EU politics....
    Simple...even if UKIP got a majority of British MEP's...just over 30% that would account for 20 odd MEP's in a Parliament of over 400 MEP's....some power!...not.
    Also...why are the nationalists winning?
    ...because every other country is a foreigner....
    What do foreigners generally do...
    Kill you...Enslave you or take what is yours, or a combination of the three...
    This is not ancient history and repeats itself.....Crimea....
    This is not an enlightened world, nothing changes it's a basic survival instinct...
    Even on a sublime level people want what belongs to YOU and always will.
    Whether it's your money or your land they are going to take it....
    Only the tools have changed.....
    The EU wants the UK in the EU not to benefit UK citizens...but to control them...did I say the EU...I meant Germany.....

    May 10th, 2014 - 12:49 pm 0
  • ilsen

    Voicey is obviously suffering from early on-set dementia and is best ignored.

    Or returned to whatever third world shithole he has managed to escape from as he certainly does not deserve to be in the UK.

    May 10th, 2014 - 01:45 pm 0
  • A_Voice

    Why don't you come up and remove me....Scotland is worth a visit this year...
    It has the Homecoming, the Commonwealth Games and the Ryder Cup.
    One hundred thousand tickets have just been released for the games that were held back.....
    I'm only a stones throw from Glasgow, I could be there in half an hour plus 20 minutes ferry crossing...I'm sure I could entertain you....

    almost forgot...“Venezuela”...are you in the throes of ecstasy now...?

    May 10th, 2014 - 03:22 pm 0
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