Publikation Inequality / Social Struggles - Racism / Neonazism - Western Europe - Political Parties / Election Analyses - Europe for the many A love-hate relationship

Far-right parties and the European Union



Online Publication


Thilo Janssen,


Rosa-Luxemburg-Stiftung Office Brussels,


Februar 2016


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The success of the right-wing populist parties is commonly considered to be a political consequence of crisis-ridden modernization processes.

To date the far-right parties have only rarely succeeded in jointly exploiting their strength of just under a quarter of seats in the European Parliament. The three right-wing populist European election victors, namely FN, UKIP and DF, are divided among rival political groups. It is above all the extremism of others, which manifests itself in anti-Semitic, racists or misogynist scandals that so far has prevented the far-right parties establishing a broad front.

This publication analyzes the success and danger posed by the right-wing populist parties in the EU. It outlines the broad spectrum of parties on the right of the conservative European People's Party (EPP) and lights their organization in the EU Parliament and networks. What are the weaknesses and problems of the right-wing parties in the formation of a stable alliance? What are their effects and what are their electoral promises and topics? The EU, by contrast, is presented as the embodiment as everything politically negative and as such has become the chief reference framework of right-wing populism. Sometimes there are overlaps between right populists in the EU and representatives of the Russian establishment.

Thilo Janssen is a political scientist and has been working as a research fellow in the European Parliament since 2008. His parliamentary work focuses on employment and social affairs in the EU and Eastern Europe. He has published various studies and articles on European parties for the Rosa-Luxemburg-Foundation. In 2012 he published «Was macht die politische Rechte im Europäischen Parlament? Herausforderungen für eine demokratische Linke» [What ist he political Right doing in the European Parliament? Challenges for a democratic Left]. This was followed in 2013 by the study «Linke Parteien in Europa - Ein Vergleich der europäischen Positionen vor den Europawahlen 2014» [The Parties oft he Left in Europe – A Comparison of their Positions on European Policy Leading into the 2014 European Elections], also available an an English translation.