6.4 million Austrian voters will go to the polls tomorrow to elect 183 members of the lower house of parliament, or Nationalrat. Foreign Minister Sebastian Kurz’s rebranded OVP retains a comfortable lead in the final opinion polling, as it has done throughout a successful campaign. The centre-right OVP’s numbers are practically unchanging, coming in at 33 per cent with four of the six pollsters included in EPR’s final average chart (below). The two exceptions are only 1 per cent adrift at 32 and 34 per cent respectively.
The populist Freedom Party (FPO) has edged into second place in the final stages of the campaign, after sitting in third in the majority of opinion polls in July and August. The FPO’s Heinz-Christian Strache, for long the least popular of the three main party leaders, has performed above expectations. But mainly the FPO has been helped by allegations of dirty tricks surrounding the Social Democrats (SPO), which have seen the SPO dip to just 23 per cent in the final poll from Research Affairs published last week.
The three smaller parties, the Greens, NEOS (New Austria) and independent Peter Pilz’s list are locked within an astounding 0.1 per cent of each other in our average table. Pilz’s break with the Greens appears to have split the latter’s vote practically down the middle: in the September 2013 election the then-united Greens took 12.4 per cent. All three of these lists are now flirting precariously with the 4 per cent hurdle that must be cleared to enter parliament and it is not impossible that none of them may win seats in Vienna.
Ten other smaller parties will contest the election: between them they average just 2.5 per cent. However this may be an understatement since polling organisations rarely include them explicitly in questions about voting intentions.
FINAL POLLING AVERAGES
Voting intentions, Nationalrat, per cent
(2013 result in brackets)
OVP (People’s Party) 33.0 (24.0) range 32 to 34
FPO (Freedom Party) 25.7 (20.5) range 25 to 27
SPO (Social Democrats) 24.7 (26.8) range 22 to 27
Neos (New Austria) 4.8 (5.0) range 4 to 6
‘Liste Pilz’ 4.8 (n/a) range 4 to 6
Gruene (Greens) 4.7 (12.4) range 4 to 6
Others 2.5 (11.3) range 2 to 3
Pollsters, publication dates and media partners: Research Affairs 09.10 (Oesterreich), OGM 08.10 (Kurier), Market 06.10 (Der Standard), Spectra 30.09 (OON), Christina Matzka 29.09 (News), Unique Research/Hajek 29.09 (ATV/Heute)
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