The European Union elects a new parliament on May 26. We talked with European journalists and NGOs from different European countries to get a picture of the European right wing. We asked them how their local right wing parties want to change the European Union and which marginalized group is hated the most.
Our questions were answered by Aleksandrs Kuzmins from „Latvian Human Rights Committee“ a human rights NGO founded in 1992.
What right-wing parties are active in your country/participating in the European elections?
What are they campaigning for/what is their political agenda?
A “Latvian Latvia” with priority being given to interests of ethnic Latvians. Protecting ethnic Latvians from alleged discrimination in labour market. Dismantling the remnants of education in national minority languages. Not accepting any quotas on redistibution of refugees from other EU member states. Remaining a NATO member.
What is their main topic for the European elections?
A “Europe of nations”. It must decide on fewer issues, but still provide funding for agriculture and projects important for Latvia (Rail Baltica in particular). Parties representing national minorities are being presented as a pro-Moscow threat, and NA – as the most hardline force against them.
What marginalised groups does their campaign oppose the most? (i.e. refugees, muslims, immigrants, jews, gender equality, Sinti and Roma, LGBTQI)
In rhetorics specific to the European elections, NA stresses opposing growth of the number of immigrants, and insists on the powers for member states to decide on its values, with a reference to the traditional family nodel. However, its narratives also include the usual theme of inciting resentment towards the Russian-speaking minorities.
How do they propose to change the EU?
NA wishes for the EU to stop the movement towards a closer union, and to have less powers. In particular, they wish for all EU member states to have their own migration policies. However, in some fields they wish EU action – to strenthen cooperation on money-laundering and to stop issuing “golden visas” across the whole Union.
How good do you think their chances are in the elections?
NA will most likely obtain one seat, as it has now. April polling by reputable SKDS puts NA at the fourth place, safely above the 5 % electoral threshold.
Text in German:
All english texts on European Election 2019: