Where to go with the AfD? Even on the EU right, the Germans are becoming too right-wing

Where to go with the AfD?  Even on the EU right, the Germans are becoming too right-wing

The AfD is having trouble with its EU top candidates, and now France’s right-winger Marine Le Pen is also ending her friendship with them. There are two large right-of-center factions in the EU Parliament – is the AfD still welcome there?

Georgia Meloni has succeeded where the Le Pens failed for decades: seizing power. The post-fascist Italian has been head of government since 2022, a position that the two French right-wingers Jean-Marie Le Pen and his daughter Marine Le Pen have never achieved. At least not yet. Which could only be a matter of time. Because Marine Le Pen, with Meloni the poster girl of the European right, has achieved what the German AfD doesn’t even seem to have an interest in: the de-radicalization of its membership.

AfD man Krah provoked too much once

Maximilian Krah, for example, the AfD’s leading candidate for the European elections, recently stated in an interview with the Roman newspaper “La Republicca” that members of the SS troops during the Nazi era were “not all criminals.” For Le Pen’s Rassemblement National party, the statement was the final straw. The proximity to the AfD is apparently so damaging to its reputation that the RN leader has now ended her collaboration with the Germans. “The AfD went from provocation to provocation,” says Le Pen.

The separation takes place with announcement: Already in February she felt compelled to have a discussion with AfD leader Alice Weidel. It was about the right-wing extremist meeting in Potsdam, in which AfD members also took part. It didn’t help. “Now it is time to make a clear break with this movement, which is clearly under the influence of radical groups,” said the Frenchwoman now.

Even Meloni distances himself from AfD

The German right is not only too right-wing for the French right: other European parties are also struggling with the AfD. After the revelations by the research group “Correctiv” about the content of the right-wing extremist meeting, Giorgia Meloni also distanced herself from the ultra-right Fratelli d’Italia from Weidel and Tino Chrupalla’s party. She spoke of “irreconcilable differences” and was primarily referring to the AfD’s relations with Russia.

It is not yet clear what the divorce will mean for the future European Parliament, but the right-wing factions will probably gain a new wing after the election on 9 June.

At present, the MEPs are divided into seven groups: on the one hand, the “Left” (including members of the German party Die Linke), the Social Democrats and the Greens. In addition, the liberal “Renew Europe” and the EPP (Christian Democrats, from whose ranks Commission President Ursula von der Leyen also comes).

Hungary’s Fidesz has no parliamentary home

To the right of this, the national conservatives gather in the “European Conservatives and Reformers” (ECR) faction and the right-wing populists in “Identity and Democracy” (ID):

  • The AfD is part of the ID faction, in which Le Pen’s RN is also organized. Politically, the parties belonging to it are quite far to the right. The “nationalist international” (Lega leader Matteo Salvini) wants to be the “thorn in the side of the Eurocrats”, as AfD man Jörg Meuthen said a few years ago. The ID also includes members of the Lega (Italy), FPÖ (Austria), Vlaams Belang (Belgium), True Finns (Finland), Dansk Folkeparti (Denmark), PVV and FvD (Netherlands), SPD (Czech Republic) and Conservative People’s Party (Estonia).

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  • The significantly larger EKR group appears somewhat more moderate. It includes politicians from 17 countries, including the German Lars Berg from the “Alliance Germany”, which emerged from the AfD. Most of the MPs come from the former Polish ruling party PiS, Georgia Meloni’s Fratelli d’Italia is represented by ten MPs. Until Brexit, the British Conservatives were also part of the EKR. The group covers the broad range from moderates to Eurosceptics – but is at least conceivable as a temporary partner for Christian Democrats like Ursula von der Leyen, as she recently said.
The EU Parliament: MPs by political group
  • The right-wing conservative Hungarian government party Fidesz was originally part of the EPP group, but left in 2021. In doing so, she forestalled an expulsion that had already been initiated due to the significant problems with the rule of law in Hungary. Their MPs do not belong to any faction in the EU Parliament, a fate that could also await the AfD MPs after the coming election. The unrest surrounding the party’s top candidates, Maximilian Krah and Petr Bystron, is likely to cost a few percent in the vote.

Sources:DPA, AFP, Reuters, ,

Source: Stern

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