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EU National Elections 2017: A year of democratic tests

30 March 2017

Three of the EU's founding Member States have been or will go to the polls in 2017: Germany, France and the Netherlands. Meanwhile, other European democratic exericses offer useful insights into the way the biggest issues are being discussed in capitals across the continent.

Each one of these elections could have significant existential implications for the EU, in addition to the national impact, as the bloc is buffeted by numerous threats ranging from Brexit to a new US administration.

Click here to read DeHavilland EU's overview briefing on the year's major European member state elections.


Held in March, the Dutch elections were hailed with a sigh of relief among European institutional stakeholders, revealing as they did a populace ill-inclined to embrace the headline-catching populists of Geert Wilders' right-wing movement.

Click here to read DeHavilland EU's briefing on the results of the Dutch elections.


A relative newcomer to the EU, Bulgaria's March elections revealed a snapshot of current political debate in the continent's east. The Balkan nation held a snap poll this spring which produced a win for the previous Prime Minister Boiko Borisov and his pro-EU GERB party.

Click here to read DeHavilland EU's briefing on the results of the Bulgarian elections.


Creating perhaps the most nervousness this year was the French Presidential election, with foreign coverage dominated by the figure of Front National candidate Marine Le Pen. May brought the news that Emmanuel Macron had triumphed over the far-right challenger, but political hurdles remained for the newly-victorious En Marche! figurehead.

Click here to read DeHavilland EU's briefing on the results of the French Presidential elections.


Still a member state despite the triggering of Article 50 in late March, the UK went to the polls in a snap General Election in June, with the nation deeply divided over Brexit. While EU leaders lamented the distraction away from the serious international negotiations to come, the contest produced a shock result with major reverberations in the tone the nation will strike in its biggest diplomatic test.

DeHavilland EU's UK sister service provided in-depth coverage of the 2017 General Election in depth. For further information, visit the DeHavilland website.


The other key EU state going to the polls in 2017 is Germany, which will hold a federal election on 25 September. While the mainstream of German politics does not look as threatened by the right wing as in some other member states, Chancellor Angela Merkel has a crucial role in the union, and her party's fortunes will be closely followed.

Click here to read DeHavilland EU's briefing on the German Elections.


European politics, definitively covered

With so many elections to keep track of, DeHavilland EU can help you make sense of the big picture with timely bulletins, briefings and analysis. Get in touch today to discover how we can help you take your public affairs practice further.

John McStravick, Policy Specialist
John McStravick
Political Specialist

John works as a Policy Specialist within the DeHavilland Content Team, where he has a special focus on Brexit and business. He holds a Masters degree in International Relations and European Politics from the University of Bath, and has also studied at the University of York and Universität Regensburg, Germany. John has previously worked at PEN International and European Movement.