Elections

Georgian presidential front-runner aims at multilateralism to thaw frozen conflicts

Born in exile, the career diplomat Salome Zurabishvili faces a runoff vote after a narrow lead in the first round. Zhanna Nemtsova In an interview with DW, she stressed the importance of democracy and multipartyism in her country. Salome Zurabishvili is an independent candidate for the Georgian presidency endorsed by the Georgian Dream party. Born in Paris to a family of Georgian emigres, she was educated in France and served as a career diplomat, and was appointed ambassador of France ... Read More »

Christians’ crisis of faith threatens Norwegian government

Kingmakers torn over prospect of ousting conservatives and installing center-left alliance. Anca Gurzu Politico The future of Norway’s conservative-led government has been thrown into doubt by a small Christian party, which will decide on Friday whether to keep supporting the ruling coalition or push the country to the left. The Christian Democratic Party (KrF) is not formally part of Prime Minister Erna Solberg’s minority administration but backs the government in key parliamentary votes. KrF leader Knut Arild Hareide shocked the country at the end of… Christians’ ... Read More »

America Isn’t the ‘Only Country’ With Birthright Citizenship

The president incorrectly claims that America is the “only country” that gives citizenship to all babies born within its borders. Yasmeen Serhan and Uri Friedman The Atlantic “We’re the only country in the world where a person comes in and has a baby, and the baby is essentially a citizen of the United States … with all of those benefits.” So said Donald Trump this week, in explaining why he may sign an executive order ending the right to citizenship for those born ... Read More »

Bolsonaro wins Brazil election, promises to purge leftists from country

After the most polarized and divisive campaign in its modern history, Brazil has elected as its next president a right-wing politician who openly disdains human rights and admires military dictators. Helder Ferreira The Conversation Jair Bolsonaro, a 63-year-old congressman who had strong evangelical backing for his law-and-order stance on policing, support for gun rights and opposition to abortion, won 55.7 percent of votes. Bolsonaro’s leftist competitor, Fernando Haddad, a former education minister and ex-mayor of São Paulo, received 45 percent of the… Bolsonaro’s angry, populist… Bolsonaro wins Brazil… Read More »

Merkel government shaken by regional vote battering

German Chancellor Angela Merkel’s coalition government on Oct. 28 suffered a beating in a second key regional election in as many weeks, multiplying questions over the future of the veteran leader’s fragile alliance. FRANKURT – Agence France-Presse Hurriyet Weakened by a strong backlash against immigration after allowing over a million people into Germany since 2015, Merkel’s fourth government has staggered from one crisis to the next since being formed earlier this year. According to an exit poll by public broadcaster ARD in Hesse state, Merkel’s Christian Democratic Union ... Read More »

Brazil’s Bolsonaro Is No Friend of Liberty

The prospect of the left-wing Workers’ Party returning to power in Brazil has encouraged many to enthusiastically support the candidacy of Jair Bolsonaro, the country’s far right candidate. Juan Carlos Hidalgo The National Interest ”The enemy of my enemy is my friend,” goes the ancient proverb. In the case of Brazil, the prospect of the left-wing Workers’ Party (PT) returning to power has encouraged the markets and some liberty advocates to enthusiastically support the candidacy of Jair Bolsonaro, a far ... Read More »

European elections ‘face growing threat of manipulation’

Commission says Facebook scandal is ‘wake-up call’ as it calls for monitoring network Daniel Boffey The Guardian EU governments cannot treat the next year’s European parliamentary elections as “business as usual” given the growing risk of foreign and corporate manipulation, according to the European commission. The scandal over the misuse of Facebook data by Cambridge Analytica and the growing evidence of illegal interference in elections were described by the commission as a “wake-up call” to which national governments had to… Věra Jourová, the ... Read More »

Trump seizes on migrant caravan ahead of midterms

The Hill’s Morning Report — Presented by PhRMA A massive caravan of Central American immigrants snaking its way toward the U.S. border has thrust the immigration debate center stage in the midterm elections, giving President Trump a high-profile political target as he… Jonathan Easley and Alexis Simendinger The Hill Democrats are eager to keep the focus on health care in the final two weeks until Election Day, but the president has spent the past 24 hours unloading on the migrant caravan, which ... Read More »

European court orders Poland to freeze judicial changes

Ruling comes just two days before local elections seen as key test for ruling party. Jan Cienski Politico WARSAW — The Polish government was ordered to “immediately” suspend changes to the country’s Supreme Court by the European Court of Justice on Friday. The ruling — issued just two days before local elections — comes in reaction to a series of recent laws revamping the functioning of the Polish court and lowering the retirement age of judges that critics said violated the constitution and undermined the… The ... Read More »

Dozens of casualties as multiple blasts rock Kabul polling centres amid Afghan elections

Multiple explosions rocked polling centres across Kabul on Saturday, causing dozens of casualties, amid growing anger among voters as they waited hours to cast their ballots in long-delayed legislative… Hurriyet KABUL – AFP At least 30 people have been taken to a trauma hospital run by the Italian NGO Emergency, including a dead child, the organisation said on Twitter, hours after the Taliban warned voters to boycott the ballot “to… Afghan officials confirmed there have been casualties but would not ... Read More »

Pakistan’s Pivot to Asia

Imran Khan is addressing his nation’s challenges by choosing liberally from a menu of Western and Asian futures. Ben Judah The Atlantic Just a few years ago, the news out of Pakistan would have sent official Washington into a tailspin. But with cable TV broadcasting Trump nonstop, few bothered to even note that a champion cricketer turned populist firebrand, Imran Khan, won the election as prime minister this summer. Nor did many pause over the fact that Khan won that ... Read More »

A Glimpse Into the Next Decade of Erdogan’s ‘New Turkey’

Upon winning his second term as president in June, and assuming the strong executive powers that had been approved by voters in a 2017 referendum, Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan cemented what he had long been seeking: the creation of a… Sinan Ciddi Stratfor The “new Turkey,” as Erdogan calls it, is a country fast becoming insular and inward-looking. From Erdogan’s perspective, Turkey’s founding elite of the 1920s created a state, society and culture fashioned according to the preferences of ... Read More »

Guy Verhofstadt stands his ground

As Rutte and Macron work toward new political alliance, the liberal leader targets nationalists. By DAVID M. HERSZENHORN Politico Guy Verhofstadt is fighting back — against nationalism. French President Emmanuel Macron and Dutch Prime Minister Mark Rutte are working toward a new political alliance that could oust Verhofstadt from his longtime post as leader of the Liberal group in the… The group, the Alliance of Liberals and Democrats for Europe (ALDE), might even dissolve and be re-created under a new name, officials ... Read More »

The man who lost Bavaria

The Bavarian premier’s tough line on migration may not save his party from losing votes on Sunday. By MATTHEW KARNITSCHNIG Politico INGOLSTADT, Germany — Markus Söder’s uncanny depictions of characters as varied as Shrek and Marilyn Monroe during Bavaria’s annual Carnival celebrations earned the German politician a reputation as a master of disguise. Portraying the real-life leader of Bavaria has been a tougher role. Barring a minor miracle, Söder’s Christian Social Union, which has dominated Bavarian politics for decades, will ... Read More »

From Caesar to Trump: Immunity is a hard thing to give up

Two prosecutors working Robert Mueller’s investigation into Russian interference in the 2016 election have left and returned to jobs at the Justice Department, a possible sign that the… Cavan W. Concannon The Conversation Among the big questions remaining, after the indictments of Trump campaign staff or confidants: Will Mueller formally charge President Donald Trump with a crime? As media coverage has underscored, there is a long-standing tradition of American jurisprudence that a president cannot be indicted while in… Ancient roots ... Read More »

Abbott hopes Australian republic ‘never happens’

Former prime minister and staunch monarchist Tony Abbott hopes an Australian republic will not happen in his lifetime. The Age AAP The issue has been in the limelight this week after former Labor prime minister Paul Keating lashed recently-toppled Liberal PM and Mr Abbott’s rival Malcolm Turnbull over the issue. Mr Keating said Mr Turnbull had capitulated to conservatives in the Liberal Party by failing to hold another referendum over a republic, a key cause supported by the former Liberal ... Read More »