Lessons from France and the UK – El Financiero

The far right has gained decision-making space in Europe. Political forces in this part of the political spectrum are now in power in countries such as Austria, Belgium, Italy and Hungary. Although each case has its own nuances, they combine a sceptical attitude towards integration, a rejection of immigration from the countries of the Global South and, in general, the populist solutions proposed by their leaders. Given these results, we expected conservative and reactionary candidates to sweep the elections in France and the United Kingdom.

Opinion polls predicted a big legislative win for this ideological pole in France, and a big gain in seats for the UKIP, the new political force to the right of the Conservative Party.

As we have recently discovered, this was not the case. What happened along the way that succeeded in putting an end to political groups promoting a pro-democracy agenda for the social majority?

In France, early legislative elections were held this weekend after the National Rally, the successor to Le Pen’s National Front, won by a large margin in the European Parliament elections two weeks ago. This is a party known for its chauvinism, xenophobia and statements by some of its leaders that have gone as far as denying the Holocaust.

Thanks to the high vision and decisive and effective action of the struggle and the leaders of the left-wing electoral forces, it was possible to confront the worst of European politics through unity. With a remarkable result, Le Pen’s party moved to third place in the electoral preferences. The French should not be negligent, because despite the setback, Le Pen’s party has more lawmakers than it did two years ago. They are not even close to a funeral.

See also  Chamber of Commerce and ProDominicana have agreed to boost exports and investment in Peravia

In the United Kingdom, for its part, Labour’s Starmer won the elections for the new parliament and the prime minister by a large margin. This is a historic defeat for the Conservatives, and represents a turning point, as there is an entire generation that has known no other way of governing than the Conservative way: this party has been in power for 14 years. In their new role as opposition, they must seek to modify their discourse if they want to reconnect with citizens who are tired of austerity policies and unfulfilled promises after Brexit. This setback opens up the possibility of new voices and proposals, focused on social welfare, concern for the environment and economic justice, taking center stage in British politics. If not, there is a great risk of handing power to the far right, this time embodied by Nigel Farage, who is famous for justifying Russia’s invasion of Ukraine.

We progressive forces have much to think about. We should ask ourselves, for example, whether electoral practices like those in France predict what the political future will be like elsewhere: a struggle between broad blocs of parties close to the center of the political spectrum against extremist candidates, blocs that demand boldness, generosity, and tactics. Likewise, we should draw lessons about the factors that led the majority to reject a way of understanding politics that runs counter to Republican values. Moreover, we should be vigilant about the results of the elections in the United States, if we are to speak with more certainty about the de-escalation of identity political movements around the world.

See also  Coronavirus in the UK today: How many cases were recorded on May 8

There is reason to be excited. The defeat of the right in France and the UK is a breath of fresh air in the European political climate. It gives us renewed hope and encourages us to move forward, convinced that a more just and supportive world is possible. The hope that comes from the results of these elections reminds us that democracy is a powerful tool for change and renewal. It inspires us to believe that, despite the challenges and tribulations, a more inclusive and just future is possible. The defeat of the right in France and the UK is not just a political victory, but a reaffirmation of democratic principles and a call to continue working for a better world from the left and progressive spaces.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *