Eight CEE Countries, 181 MEPs, and the results are in!

Following the conclusion of the EP voting, our teams across the CEE region bring you our analysis  how did the citizens of Bulgaria, Croatia, Czechia, Hungary, Poland, Romania, Slovakia and Slovenia choose their representatives.

The centre-right European People’s Party (EPP) remains the largest political group in the region, amassing more than a third of the total seats the group obtained across the EU. Adding the far-right European Conservatives and Reformists (ECR) to the mix, it is clear that the region is mainly represented by the right of the political spectrum. Political shifts happened across every country in the region, not only in the political programmes being voted upon but also in the figures that will be going to the new look EP.

Out of the 181 MEPs (25% of 720), there will be 101 new faces in Brussels. Turnout was mixed across the region. The Czech Republic, Slovakia and Slovenia all saw record turnouts, with Hungary and Romania being the only two regional Member States above the EU’s 51% average. However, turnout in the region still remains low overall, signalling that local politics trumps the politics of Brussels in the mind of the CEE electorate.

High turnout in Hungary paved the way for the newly formed party TISZA to truly challenge Fidesz,  which for the first time in 20 years did not secure an absolute majority in the EP elections. In Poland, Tusk won his first election in 10 years, but PiS still remains strong – a sign of how strong the polarization within the Polish society remains. On other hand, an unlikely alliance between the left and centre-right Romania secured them wins both in EP and in local elections.

In Slovakia, half of the new MEP representation will not be part of any of the active factions in the EP, while Croatia boosted their EPP numbers to the detriment of Eurosceptics. In the Czech Republic the opposition won the EP elections and there was a tide of protest coalitions against the current establishment.

In line with the continental trend, Bulgarian politicians were focused on local developments, driven by the local snap elections which took part simultaneously. Slovenia used these elections as an opportunity to hold referendum votes on matters such as medical and personal use of cannabis and rights to support of assisted dying, all of which the government won.

Together with the general overview how the politics have shifted in the region, this analysis identifies key MEPs to track in the next 5-year mandate, alongside key local highlights and insights from local elections that were held simultaneously with the EP elections.

Download your copy of the EP elections results – CEE region report.