Informed by and against the backdrop of the 2019 European Parliament (EP) elections, this innovative book provides a critical assessment of where Europe stands in terms of the quest to achieve democratic legitimacy. Since the 2014 EP elections, the European Union (EU) has experienced multiple crises, which arguably have undermined its legitimacy.

The 2019 EP elections were hence seen as a crucial moment in the EU’s attempts to show resilience and regain trust. Using political science and legal frames of analysis, Assessing the 2019 European Parliament Elections provides an understanding and assessment of the current politico-legal framework, and its impact on European elections. Furthermore, using original data, it provides a timely examination of public opinion issue priorities and voting behaviour at the 2019 EP elections in eight countries. Given the critical conjuncture that the 2019 EP elections represent, this volume provides a key contribution to understanding both the dynamics surrounding the elections, as well as voters’ responses, and informs debates on European politics, for example, second-order elections, democratic legitimacy and political representation.

This book will be of key interest to scholars and students of EU politics, public administration, European studies, European law, and sociology, along with practitioners in politics, journalism, and policy analysis.

chapter |6 pages


Assessing the 2019 European Parliament elections

part I|59 pages

The politico-legal framework of the 2019 European elections

chapter 2|18 pages

From dawn to doom

The institutionalization of the Spitzenkandidaten process during European elections and its final negation

chapter 3|17 pages

The fall of the Spitzenkandidaten

Political parties and conflict in the 2019 European elections

part II|29 pages

Public opinion and voting behaviour in the 2019 European Parliament elections

part III|138 pages

The 2019 European Parliament elections in eight countries

chapter 7|15 pages

The 2019 EP election in Austria

A highly salient domestic test election

chapter 8|18 pages

The 2019 EP election in Denmark

A European election within a national contest

chapter 9|17 pages

The 2019 EP election in France

Second-order or second-hand?

chapter 10|19 pages

The 2019 EP election in Germany

Between migration and the climate crisis

chapter 11|19 pages

The 2019 EP election in Hungary

Orbán’s long shadow

chapter 12|16 pages

The 2019 EP election in Italy

Second-order but still salient elections?

chapter 13|15 pages

The 2019 EP election in Poland

In the shadow of extreme polarization

chapter 14|17 pages

The 2019 EP election in Spain

Settling a national score?

chapter |7 pages


From second-order towards first-order elections