1. Exquisite Tweets from @AlbertoNardelli

    PreoccupationsCollected by Preoccupations

    Big day ahead for European politics. A few thoughts, on Austria first:

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    AlbertoNardelli

    Alberto Nardelli

    1. Important to keep in mind that president's role is mostly ceremonial. But in part due to convention. Conventions and institutions evolve

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    AlbertoNardelli

    Alberto Nardelli

    2. At the same time, an FPÖ president would be the first elected far-right head of state/government in western Europe since WWII

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    AlbertoNardelli

    Alberto Nardelli

    3. FPÖ, whose first leaders in the 50s were former SS officers, is also leading in parliamentary polls.

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    AlbertoNardelli

    Alberto Nardelli

    4. Again, context important: in Austria, governments are usually a coalition. Single party government is highly unlikely

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    AlbertoNardelli

    Alberto Nardelli

    5. FPÖ win today shows just how much Europe has changed. In 2000, when FPÖ supported coalition gov't, sanctions were imposed on Austria

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    AlbertoNardelli

    Alberto Nardelli

    6. In summary: today's vote is on the one hand symbolic, but on the other, symbols matter and history shows that circumstances do evolve

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    AlbertoNardelli

    Alberto Nardelli

    Now to Italy:

    1. A suggestion: ignore exit polls, instant polls etc - historically, they are not very good. Wait for actual results

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    AlbertoNardelli

    Alberto Nardelli

    2. If vote is close, we may need to wait for the results of Italian voters abroad. Turnout among those voting abroad is likely to be high

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    AlbertoNardelli

    Alberto Nardelli

    3. Today's vote in Italy is highly consequential. Far more, in my view, than most care or seem to realise.

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    AlbertoNardelli

    Alberto Nardelli