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Sunday, July 31, 2016

Meanwhile In Austria

Before we get to our own elections, there will be a presidential election in Austria in October.  Right now, Hofer, the candidate of the right is leading the Green Party leader by about 5% in the polls.  The two candidates faced each other almost a year ago in an election that the country's supreme court annulled due to irregularities in counting the votes.  It had been a very tight race.

If Hofer wins, he will be the first rightist leader in the European Union.  That's amusing in a way because Hofer wants the country to leave the EU or at least to renegotiate the terms of that bloc.

It's unclear whether the swing in the electorate towards Hofer is the result of the refugee crisis facing Europe, the reverberations of the Brexit vote, anger following the vote counting irregularities of the earlier election or all three.

It's always worrisome to see the three words "right wing Austrian" strung together, but despite that, Hofer is not a modern version of Hitler. 

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