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The forthcoming European elections will set off a chain of events that in a few months could deeply change the European union's political landscape.
Immigration doesn’t appear to be the only worry of Europeans, also economic fears are widespread. And analyses suggest that the success of the new populist group is far from certain.
Climate, the economy and – immigration. The candidates and parties standing in the European Parliament election are spending millions of euros on election advertising on Facebook. We have checked the contents of around 35,000 adverts from five different countries.
Data on political ads posted in the months leading up to the European elections highlights the differences between the political contexts in various member states. In Romania, it’s the national parties who spend the most, in Greece it’s individual candidates, and in Slovenia it’s the European Parliament.
Parties and candidates are spending increasing amounts on online political advertising. The situation can no longer be ignored, but the Parliament is yet to intervene.
During last month’s European election campaign, the EU institutions and European political parties spent almost four million euro on paid Facebook posts. Data published by Facebook reveals how much was spent in each country, and who spent the most.
Polish candidates to the European Parliament spent hundreds of thousands of złoty on Facebook ads. The most money was spent on European Coalition’s pages. Confederation, on the other hand, has clearly invested in the nationalist leader Krzysztof Bosak.
Analysis: German parties differ greatly in how they advertise on Facebook. The conservative CDU targets individual regions, the left-wing SPD tailors its adverts by gender. The far-right AfD has a totally different approach.
The next five years the European Union will be more fragmented than ever. This fragmentation is the key lesson of the 2019 European elections. However, contrary to the dominant narrative of the last decade or so, the old centrist blocs are not confronted with just a plethora of anti-system populist parties and groups.
Leftwing coalition Syriza’s rise to power in 2015 seemed to swept away the old greek political order. But a journey through the strongholds of these dynasties shows they never went away. Their power lies deeper in history.