How to deal with right-wing populism in Europe?

The poll ratings of right-wing populist currents, some of which are in favour of their countries leaving the EU, are rising in several member states. In Poland, for example, Konfederacja could grow from the smallest to the third strongest force in this autumn's parliamentary elections. Europe's press asks how the trend should be faced.

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HuffPost Greece (GR) /

Far right becoming socially acceptable

HuffPost Greece's columnist Yannis Gounaris points out emerging alliances on the right-wing front:

“The convergence between European right-wing and far-right movements is a phenomenon that has been developing for over a decade. The election of Meloni was the catalyst that finally normalised it. From now on, we will increasingly witness traditional 'centre-right parties' forming alliances with far-right parties who were once considered untouchable and marginal. The convergence is accomplished by a makeover of far-right parties and a considerably heightened shift of the 'established' right towards far-right stances.”

The Observer (GB) /

Left has abandoned the field to the right

The Observer explains why conservative and reactionary politicians dominate the debate on migration in Britain:

“The paradox is that the public in Britain is more liberal today about immigration than are most politicians. Yet the timidity of the Labour party in challenging reactionary claims, or in articulating an alternative vision, has allowed the right to frame the debate and to pursue unconscionable policies. The far right does not need to be in power for its ideas to percolate more widely, even within societies that think of themselves as 'liberal'.”

Gazeta Wyborcza (PL) /

Poland has similar problems with similar parties

For Gazeta Wyborcza the growing popularity of the new right-wing populist party Konfederacja in Poland is part of a European trend:

“Konfederacja is trying to make political capital out of the growing economic frustration. This is not just a Polish phenomenon. In a perverse way, it can even be seen as progress: our society differs less and less from Western societies and we have the same problems as they do. And in response, the same political parties are emerging in our country. ... This is small consolation, because it only goes to show that Europe urgently needs new systemic solutions: for migration, income redistribution, the role of the state, the welfare state and the labour market.”

Le Temps (CH) /

Address voters' concerns

Le Temps holds the political centre accountable:

“It is precisely in the banalisation of the far right that the danger lies. ... As for the moderate parties, they have a responsibility to openly address the issues that concern voters if they want to prevent a historic breakthrough by the radical right. Given that the latter already thrives under favourable economic conditions, one can only imagine how difficult it will be to prevent its rise in the event of a severe economic crisis.”

Sega (BG) /

Do not turn all sceptics into enemies

Europe must take the moderate criticism seriously if it wants to arm itself against far right currents, Sega insists:

“In many countries there are strong Eurosceptic, national conservative parties in Europe that either form the government or take part in it. They are fleeing the liberal wave and resisting European federalism, nevertheless they are dedicated and unwavering Europeans and democrats. The EU must involve them more, and not wage war against them. If it does it risks falling into the hands of something much more important - the extreme right, which is sprouting like weeds.”