Don’t celebrate the win in Austria too wildly: 46% voted fascist

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News reports would have us believe there is widespread relief across Europe that Austria voted for a Green president rather than a far right candidate allied to the National Front in France. And of course I am relieved as well.

But I am not celebrating too wildly: more than 46% of Austrians voted for someone who would appear to be a fascist. This time the momentum has been stopped, but the trend is profoundly worrying. And it appears to have been very typical in its make up: urban Austria voted Green, and rural Austria voted fascist. The implication is that fear of social integration underpins these votes, and the reality does not.

The need for new narratives is urgent. If not the number living in fear can only grow.