2024 European Parliament Election Overview

The 2024 European Parliament elections have concluded with substantial shifts in the political landscape across the 27 member states, affecting both national and European levels.

European Political Groups

Before delving into the results of the election, we need to briefly explain how the European Parliament works. For a more detailed article on the functioning of the European Union and its parliament, please read our dedicated article.

Each national party is affiliated with a European party, which aggregates entities with similar political stances across Europe. Each European party, in turn, is part of a political group within the parliament, similar to a coalition in national elections.

These political groups are as follows:

  • European United Left/Nordic Green Left (Left): Represents the far-left, including socialist and communist parties.
  • Greens/European Free Alliance (Greens/EFA): Focuses on environmental issues and regionalist policies.
  • Progressive Alliance of Socialists and Democrats (S&D): Center-left group promoting social democracy.
  • Renew Europe (RE): Comprises liberal and centrist parties, advocating for European integration and market-friendly approaches.
  • European People’s Party (EPP): The largest center-right group, emphasizing Christian democratic and conservative values.
  • European Conservatives and Reformists (ECR): Right-wing, focusing on Euro-skeptic and reformist policies.
  • Identity and Democracy (ID): Far-right group critical of the EU, promoting national sovereignty and strict immigration controls.
  • Non-Inscrits (NI): Members not affiliated with any recognized political group, due to misalignment with the established groups’ policies.

Global Results

The 2024 European Parliament elections have resulted in notable shifts across the spectrum of political groups, reflecting broader trends across the EU member states.

Estimations at 15:18 GMT+2 for the distribution of seats by political group in the European Parliament. CREDIT: European Union.
  • The Left faced a challenging election cycle. The group maintained 36 seats, experiencing a slight decrease from previous results.
  • The Greens/EFA group suffered significant losses, securing only 52 seats, a decrease of 20 seats.
  • The EPP remains the largest bloc within the European Parliament, increasing its seats to 184, up by 8 from the previous election.
  • The S&D group held its ground amid challenging electoral dynamics, maintaining a substantial presence with 139 seats.
  • Renew Europe secured 80 seats. While it faced stiff competition, RE plays a strategic role in potential coalitions with the EPP and/or S&D.
  • The ECR group increased its representation to 72 seats. This right-wing group has capitalized on growing sentiments of EU reform and skepticism, particularly among voters dissatisfied with the mainstream European policies.
  • The ID group is similar to the ECR, and increased its seat count to 58.

Rise of Right-wing Populist Parties

Right-wing populist parties have made substantial gains in this election cycle. The ECR group is projected to secure 72 seats, while the ID group is expected to secure 58 seats.

Notably, the German far-right party, Alternative für Deutschland (AfD), has now doubled its representation to 16 seats, despite being expelled from the ID group. This achievement marks a historic second-place finish, surpassing Chancellor Olaf Scholz’s Social Democrats.

These gains were echoed in other countries as well. In France, the Rassemblement National (RN) party garnered 32 percent of the votes, which was twice the tally of President Emmanuel Macron’s party.

Legitimization of Right-wing Populist Parties

The election results have marked the integration of right-wing populist parties within Europe’s electorates and their electoral successes reflect a broader acceptance or normalization of their positions among European voters. This increased support can be interpreted as these parties gaining legitimacy within the political landscape of Europe.

This acceptance is echoed in the national politics of member states: following the RN victory, President Macron dissolved the national parliament and called for new elections at the end of the month.

The integration of far-right parties into European political processes implies discussions of union among far-right factions to efficiently coordinate votes within the ECR and ID groups. However, deep divergences exist within these groups, particularly regarding attitudes towards Russia and differing visions for the future of the EU, posing challenges to forming a unified bloc.

Moreover, the ideological stance of these parties, often centered on nationalism and skepticism towards the EU, prompts a complex dynamic within the Parliament, as they may operate more effectively as a blocking minority rather than a cohesive legislative force.

Provisional results by member state

All the provisional results were retrieved at 11:50 GMT+2. The provisional results for Ireland are not yet available. All the charts are from the European Union.

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