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Living in the EU: European Elections and Democracy

30-04-2019

The concept of participation lies at the heart of the European project, however recent years have seen a decrease in electoral turnout in contrast to the broader feelings of EU citizens of being part of a wider project promoting prosperity, social cohesion, unity and tolerance. Participation differs among different groups, and among the most explored is the gender gap in political participation, even though progress has been achieved over the years. Nowadays many European citizens show an increasing ...

The concept of participation lies at the heart of the European project, however recent years have seen a decrease in electoral turnout in contrast to the broader feelings of EU citizens of being part of a wider project promoting prosperity, social cohesion, unity and tolerance. Participation differs among different groups, and among the most explored is the gender gap in political participation, even though progress has been achieved over the years. Nowadays many European citizens show an increasing attachment to the EU, and its democracy, despite the perception of corruption and the challenges to press freedom affecting Member States to different degrees.

Election of the President of the European Commission: Understanding the Spitzenkandidaten process

05-04-2019

The European Parliament has long sought to ensure that, by voting in European elections, European citizens not only elect the Parliament itself, but also have a say over who would head the EU executive – the European Commission. What became known as the 'Spitzenkandidaten process' is a procedure whereby European political parties, ahead of European elections, appoint lead candidates for the role of Commission President, with the presidency of the Commission then going to the candidate of the political ...

The European Parliament has long sought to ensure that, by voting in European elections, European citizens not only elect the Parliament itself, but also have a say over who would head the EU executive – the European Commission. What became known as the 'Spitzenkandidaten process' is a procedure whereby European political parties, ahead of European elections, appoint lead candidates for the role of Commission President, with the presidency of the Commission then going to the candidate of the political party capable of marshalling sufficient parliamentary support. The Parliament remains firmly committed to repeating the process in 2019 and, with EP elections now only weeks away, attention has shifted to the European political parties. A number of parties have nominated lead candidates, and this briefing gives an overview of their nominees, as well as looking more broadly at the process. This is a revised and further updated edition of an earlier briefing; previous edition from February 2019.

European Parliament: Facts and Figures

29-03-2019

This Briefing, published by the European Parliamentary Research Service, is designed to provide key facts and figures about the European Parliament, both in the 2014 to 2019 parliamentary term now drawing to a close - and in the seven previous terms since direct elections were introduced in June 1979. On the following pages you will find graphics of various kinds which: • detail the composition of the European Parliament now and in the past; • trace the increase in the number of parties represented ...

This Briefing, published by the European Parliamentary Research Service, is designed to provide key facts and figures about the European Parliament, both in the 2014 to 2019 parliamentary term now drawing to a close - and in the seven previous terms since direct elections were introduced in June 1979. On the following pages you will find graphics of various kinds which: • detail the composition of the European Parliament now and in the past; • trace the increase in the number of parties represented in the EP and evolution of political groups; • chart the rise in the number of women sitting in the Parliament; • explain the electoral systems used in elections to the Parliament across the Member States; • show how turnout in European elections compares with that in national elections; • summarise the activity of the Parliament in the 2014-19 term, and in the 2009-14 term; • present the annual cost of the Parliament compared with other parliaments; • outline the composition of the Parliament’s main governing bodies. The Briefing has been updated regularly during the 2014-19 term to take account of latest developments.

The US mid-term elections of November 2018

19-10-2018

The forthcoming mid-term elections in the United States, to be held on 6 November 2018, are likely to offer a closely watched political verdict on the first two years of Donald Trump's presidency. They will define not only the composition of the 116th US Congress, to meet from 3 January 2019 to 3 January 2021, but also the power balance both within Congress and between Congress and the President. In US mid-term elections, the entire House of Representatives and one third of the Senate are up for ...

The forthcoming mid-term elections in the United States, to be held on 6 November 2018, are likely to offer a closely watched political verdict on the first two years of Donald Trump's presidency. They will define not only the composition of the 116th US Congress, to meet from 3 January 2019 to 3 January 2021, but also the power balance both within Congress and between Congress and the President. In US mid-term elections, the entire House of Representatives and one third of the Senate are up for election. The Democratic party, currently the minority in both chambers, aims to regain control of the House of Representatives, at least, although the conditions for its winning back the Senate are less favourable. Any shift in power towards the Democrats will result in increased scrutiny and pressure on the sitting President, and might lead to detailed investigations in Congress into the performance of his Administration, and potentially to an impeachment attempt against President Trump personally. By contrast, if the Republicans succeed in retaining control of both chambers, this will consolidate the President’s power-base within his own party, create a more favourable backdrop to his intended run for re-election in 2020, and exacerbate the identity and leadership crises within the Democratic party. This Briefing provides background to the forthcoming mid-term elections, by offering an overview of how the US Congress is elected, by explaining issues such as voter registration, voting methods, the way the primaries work, election security issues and gerrymandering. It goes on to analyse the potential political implications of the mid-term election results.

European Parliament: Facts and Figures

11-04-2018

This Briefing, published by the European Parliamentary Research Service, is designed to provide key facts and figures about the European Parliament, both today - during the current 2014 to 2019 parliamentary term - and in the seven previous terms since direct elections were introduced in June 1979. On the following pages you will find graphics of various kinds which: • detail the composition of the European Parliament now and in the past; • trace the increase in the number of parties represented ...

This Briefing, published by the European Parliamentary Research Service, is designed to provide key facts and figures about the European Parliament, both today - during the current 2014 to 2019 parliamentary term - and in the seven previous terms since direct elections were introduced in June 1979. On the following pages you will find graphics of various kinds which: • detail the composition of the European Parliament now and in the past; • trace the increase in the number of parties represented in the EP and evolution of political groups; • chart the rise in the number of women sitting in the Parliament; • explain the electoral systems used in elections to the Parliament across the Member States; • show how turnout in European elections compares with that in national elections; • summarise the activity of the Parliament in the 2009-14 term, and so far in the current term; • present the annual cost of the Parliament compared with other parliaments; • outline the composition of the Parliament’s main governing bodies. The Briefing is updated regularly during the 2014-19 term to take account of latest developments.

Russia's 2018 presidential election: Six more years of Putin

08-03-2018

On 18 March 2018, Russians will elect the president who will govern their country for the next six years. Incumbent, Vladimir Putin is firmly on track to win, with approval ratings that have stayed above 80 % since Russia's illegal annexation of Crimea in 2014. Russians see him as a strong president, who has brought order to the country and restored its great power status. They are worried about the economy, poverty and corruption, but these problems, though partly blamed on Putin, have barely dented ...

On 18 March 2018, Russians will elect the president who will govern their country for the next six years. Incumbent, Vladimir Putin is firmly on track to win, with approval ratings that have stayed above 80 % since Russia's illegal annexation of Crimea in 2014. Russians see him as a strong president, who has brought order to the country and restored its great power status. They are worried about the economy, poverty and corruption, but these problems, though partly blamed on Putin, have barely dented his popularity. Reportedly, Putin's campaign has set a twin target of a 70 % vote in his favour and a 70 % turnout. Polls suggest that Putin will indeed win by a record margin, but also that a low turnout will tarnish his victory, denying him a ringing endorsement at the start of his fourth and probably final term in office. Apathy will probably be the main reason for voters staying at home, but some will heed an election boycott called by Alexey Navalny, Putin's most vocal opponent, who has been barred from the race. Vying for second place are seven other candidates. The most likely runners-up are veteran Vladimir Zhirinovsky and newcomer Pavel Grudinin. Reality TV star Xenia Sobchak adds colour to an otherwise lacklustre campaign, but few see her as a credible candidate. Widespread electoral fraud on the day of the vote is not expected. Nevertheless, the exclusion of Alexey Navalny and the lack of any real alternative to Putin raise questions about the democratic legitimacy of the election.

European Parliament: Facts and Figures

10-03-2017

This Briefing, published by the European Parliamentary Research Service, is designed to provide key facts and figures about the European Parliament, both today - during the current 2014 to 2019 parliamentary term - and in the seven previous terms since direct elections were introduced in June 1979. On the following pages you will find graphics of various kinds which: • detail the composition of the European Parliament now and in the past; • trace the increase in the number of parties represented ...

This Briefing, published by the European Parliamentary Research Service, is designed to provide key facts and figures about the European Parliament, both today - during the current 2014 to 2019 parliamentary term - and in the seven previous terms since direct elections were introduced in June 1979. On the following pages you will find graphics of various kinds which: • detail the composition of the European Parliament now and in the past; • trace the increase in the number of parties represented in the EP and evolution of political groups; • chart the rise in the number of women sitting in the Parliament; • explain the electoral systems used in elections to the Parliament across the Member States; • show how turnout in European elections compares with that in national elections; • summarise the activity of the Parliament in the 2009-14 term, and so far in the current term; • present the annual cost of the Parliament compared with other parliaments; • outline the composition of the Parliament’s main governing bodies. The Briefing is being updated regularly during the 2014-19 term to take account of latest developments. This version is an update of a briefing published in March 2016, PE 573.919.

European Parliament: Facts and Figures

04-03-2016

This Briefing, published by the European Parliamentary Research Service, is designed to provide key facts and figures about the European Parliament, both today and in previous terms since direct elections were introduced in June 1979. On the following pages you will find graphics of various kinds which: -detail the composition of the European Parliament now and in the past; -trace the increase in the number of parties represented in the Parliament and show the evolution of political groups ...

This Briefing, published by the European Parliamentary Research Service, is designed to provide key facts and figures about the European Parliament, both today and in previous terms since direct elections were introduced in June 1979. On the following pages you will find graphics of various kinds which: -detail the composition of the European Parliament now and in the past; -trace the increase in the number of parties represented in the Parliament and show the evolution of political groups; -chart the rise in the number of women sitting in the Parliament; -explain the electoral systems used in elections to the Parliament across the Member States; -show how turnout in European elections compares with that in national elections; -summarise the activity of the Parliament in the 2009-14 term, and the start of the current term; -present the annual cost of the Parliament compared with other parliaments; -outline the composition of the Parliament’s main governing bodies. This is an updated version of a briefing published in April 2015.

Review of European and National Election Results. Second update

26-02-2016

This document provides a second update of the Review of European and National Elections, published in November 2014 by the Public Opinion Monitoring Unit of DG Communication.  The Review was dedicated to the results of the European elections of May 2014 and to the history of 35 years of direct elections to the European Parliament since 1979, as well as to the different national elections. This latest edition addresses the changes in the European Parliament since the first update, published in July ...

This document provides a second update of the Review of European and National Elections, published in November 2014 by the Public Opinion Monitoring Unit of DG Communication.  The Review was dedicated to the results of the European elections of May 2014 and to the history of 35 years of direct elections to the European Parliament since 1979, as well as to the different national elections. This latest edition addresses the changes in the European Parliament since the first update, published in July 2015. The reader will also find the results of the elections held in Member States since July 2015: five legislative elections (EL, ES, HR, PL, and PT) and one direct presidential election (PT).

Review of European and National Election Results. First update: Changes in the EP since November 2014

13-08-2015

This document provides an update of the Review of European and National Elections, published in November 2014 by the Public Opinion Monitoring Unit of DG Communication. The Review was dedicated to the results of the European elections of May 2014 and to the history of 35 years of direct elections to the European Parliament since 1979, as well as to the different national elections. This update addresses the changes in the European Parliament since the first edition, notably the replacement of 14 ...

This document provides an update of the Review of European and National Elections, published in November 2014 by the Public Opinion Monitoring Unit of DG Communication. The Review was dedicated to the results of the European elections of May 2014 and to the history of 35 years of direct elections to the European Parliament since 1979, as well as to the different national elections. This update addresses the changes in the European Parliament since the first edition, notably the replacement of 14 MEPs and the creation of a new political group. It also takes into account the elections held in Member States since November 2014: five legislative elections (DK, EE, EL, FI and UK) and two direct presidential elections (HR, PL).

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