European elections 2019: Turnout across bloc at 20-year high

Ireland one of few countries where turnout fell, with EU-wide vote up eight points on 2014

The Green surge took the Irish pundits by surprise but how did they fair across Europe, and did the populist parties make big gains? Video: European Parliment

 

Officials at the European Parliament say turnout across all of the bloc’s 28 countries was a 20-year high of 50.95 per cent in the weekend elections.

Spokesman Jaume Duch Guillot said the turnout was eight percentage points higher than the last Europe-wide vote for the parliament in 2014. He said the figures, which includes voting from the UK, “shows that European citizens realise that the European Union is part of their everyday reality and future”.

Ireland was one of the few countries in which turnout declined – by about 3 per cent, to 49.3 per cent. Turnout in Northern Ireland was 45.14 per cent, down more than 6 per cent on the 2014 poll.

The highest turnout across the bloc was in Belgium (89 per cent), where there is compulsory voting.

Pro-European parties retained a firm grip on the European Parliament, provisional results from the European elections showed on Monday, though Eurosceptic opponents saw strong gains. – AP