Europeans set to cast
their vote soon: The EU

Elections and its Implications

By ANNA WIEDEMANN | April 25, 2019

From May 23 to 26, an estimated 512 million citizens from 28 European Union (EU) member states will be able to vote for 751 Members of the European Parliament (MEPs). These MEPs will be elected to represent their pressing interests and agendas to the European Parliament over the next 5 years. This election stands as a pivotal moment for the future of the EU, with its outcome determining the stance taken on topics ranging from sustainability and climate change to economic policies, citizens’ rights, corporate and digital regulations, infrastructure development, and investment.

 

The structure of the electoral process begins with each individual eligible citizen casting a vote for one of their national parties. Within the Netherlands, this selection consists of sixteen parties representing the political spectrum from left to right. The successfully elected MEPs for the Netherlands then come together with MEPs from the rest of the EU to form the transnational parties that make up the seats within the EU parliament.


According to news website politico.eu, the Forum voor Democratie (Forum for Democracy, FvD), the biggest newcomer at the recent Dutch regional elections, is expected to top the poll with 18% of the vote, according to projections on April 16. The Volkspartij voor Vrijheid en Democratie (People’s Party for Freedom and Democracy, VVD) and GroenLinks (GreenLeft, GL) are projected to come second and third, with 15% and 12% respectively. 2014’s election saw a turnout of just 37% of the Dutch electorate.

Politico.eu data
Forum for Democracy 18%
People’s Party for Freedom and Democracy 15%
GreenLeft 12%

Non-Dutch EU citizens living in the Netherlands were able to register to vote for Dutch MEPs through their local municipality prior to April 9 using the Y-32 form. Without completing this form, EU citizens in the Netherlands may instead vote for their respective countries’ MEPs.

 

Europe’s political landscape is shifting. The influx of migration, the rise of digitalization, global warming, and the growth of international trade all serve to differentiate the parties. On the issue of climate change, where discussion centers around support for the Paris Agreement, the Partij voor de Vrijheid (PVV) maintains a strong opposition. Meanwhile, center-right parties (CU and CDA) aim to implement local economic infrastructure and tax policies to encourage sustainable growth. Parties on the right uphold a generally Eurosceptic consensus, instead focusing on strengthening national foundations prior to extending into transnational policies.

 

In contrast, on the left side of the political spectrum a more liberal stance is taken on the matters of migration, labor and trading policies. Additionally, fair employment and education opportunities for all, sustainable economies on the basis of clean energy schemes and establishing social security nets from healthcare to labor rights for all citizens remain the core positions of the European left going into these elections.

 

The right to vote constitutes to the key principle of the European democratic system. With around 30 days left until the voting period begins, parties are focusing on broadcasting their positions clearly and encouraging all eligible individuals to inform themselves on which party will best represent their core principles and interests for the coming five years.




Support The Amsterdammer

We believe in the right to inform the students, Dutch or international, about their surroundings and the university life. We give a voice to the voiceless and have already formed over 100 students since April 2018. However, we need your help to continue to investigate, inform and train the students.

Support The Amsterdammer

We believe in the right to inform the students, Dutch or international, about their surroundings and the university life. We give a voice to the voiceless and have already formed over 100 students since April 2018. However, we need your help to continue to investigate, inform and train the students.