The End of the Moderate Exception?
On Sunday elections are being held in Spain. Kristina Kausch argues that these will mark the end of the Spanish exception to the rise of right-wing populism in Europe. So far, the extreme right had been absorbed in the conservative People’s Party, but the latter’s perceived weakness over Catalonian separatism (which above all is a matter of Catalonian vs Spanish nationalism) has driven the most extreme nationalist elements out of the party and has been the base of the sudden support for the extreme-right VOX, which was the big winner in Andalusia’s regional elections and is projected to win big in the national and European Parliament elections in April and May respectively. The next government is likely to be either a conservative bloc with the extreme-right as kingmakers or a left-wing bloc with the separatists as kingmakers. Either way, Spain is moving to the extremes.