European Populists Make Historic Electoral Gains

Due to the continent's worst migrant crisis since World War II, European populist parties are surging.

GERMANY -- Chancellor Angela Merkel's Christian Democratic Union (CDU) lost seats in a backlash against her "open-door" refugee policy. Alternative for Germany (AfD) won 14 percent of the vote.

AUSTRIA -- The Freedom Party (FPOe) narrowly missed winning a May 22 presidential election. Norbert Hofer could be Europe's first populist head of state since 1945.

SLOVAKIA -- In March, the People's Party Our Slovakia won 14 seats in parliament. Prime Minister Robert Fico called EU migrant policy "ritual suicide".

HUNGARY -- The Fidesz party has organized the October 2 referendum on migrant relocation under an EU quota plan.

POLAND -- The Law and Justice (PiS) party swept back into power in late 2015.

NORWAY -- The Progress Party won 16 percent of the vote. Sylvi Listhaug said "the tyranny of kindness is blowing over Norwegian society like a nightmare".

DENMARK -- The Danish People's Party won 21 percent of the vote in a 2015. This year Denmark introduced measures to deter migrants.

FINLAND -- The nationalist Finns Party won 18 percent of the vote in 2015.

BRITAIN -- The historic vote on June 23 to leave the EU was the biggest success to date of populist movements in Europe.

FRANCE -- The National Front has notched up several local electoral successes since 2012. FN's Marine Le Pen has likened the migrant influx to the "barbarian invasions" of the fourth century.

NETHERLANDS -- The Freedom Party is currently leading polls for a March 2017 legislative vote. The party's platform calls for a closure of "all mosques and Islamic schools" and "a ban on the Koran."
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