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Parliament Geneva's populist and rightwing groups routed in elections

Chart showing the share of seats for the political parties in the Geneva cantonal parliament

Geneva's voters decided on the party-political make-up of their cantonal parliament, but turnout was only 39% 

(Keystone)

Populist and rightwing parties have suffered a significant defeat in Sunday’s elections to the Geneva cantonal parliament.

Final resultsexternal link show the Geneva Citizens’ Movement (Mouvement Citoyens Genevois MCG) losing nine of its 20 parliamentary seats. The populist group had already been weakened by an internal power struggle.

The local branch of the People’s Party saw the number of its representatives reduced from 11 to eight.

Political scientist Pascal Sciarini said Geneva’s political right was too fragmented and was unable to compensate via expensive electoral campaigns.

He said the new distribution of seats should help make Geneva’s parliament more predictable over the next four-year term.

The main winners on Sunday were the left: the Greens won five additional seats, taking them to 15, and the Social Democrats won two; it now commands 17 seats.

However, the strongest group in in 100-seat parliament remains the centre-right Radical Party with 28 representatives (+4).

Government

Run-off elections will have to be held for the seven-member cantonal government next month, as only one candidate, Pierre Maudet, Geneva’s current head of the security and economics department, won the necessary number of votes in the first round.

Switzerland’s 26 cantons, which have considerable autonomy as part of the country’s federalist system, all have parliaments and governments. Such elections are sometimes seen as indicators for national politics.

Elections to the Swiss parliament are scheduled for October 2019.

swissinfo with SDA-ATS; urs

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