每日英語跟讀 Ep.K175: Populist Leaders in Eastern Europe Run Into a Little Problem: Unpopularity
A right-wing populist wave in Eastern Europe, lifted by Donald Trump’s surprise victory in 2016, has not crashed as a result of his defeat last November. But it has collided with a serious obstacle: Its leaders are not very popular.
After winning elections by railing against widely disliked elites, right-wing populists on Europe’s formerly communist eastern flank, it turns out, are themselves not much liked. That is due in large part to unpopular coronavirus lockdowns, and, like other leaders no matter their political complexion, their stumbling responses to the health crisis.
In Hungary, Prime Minister Viktor Orban is being countered by an uncharacteristically united opposition. In Poland, the deeply conservative government has made an abrupt shift to the left in economic policy to win back support. And in Slovenia, the hard-right governing party of the Trump-loving prime minister is slumping disastrously in the polls.
Slovenia’s leader, Janez Jansa, who made international headlines by congratulating Trump on his “victory” in November and is a self-declared scourge of liberal, or what he calls communist, elites, is perhaps the most at risk of the region’s unpopular populists.
Propelled by nationalist promises to bar asylum-seekers from the Middle East and “ensure the survival of the Slovenian nation,” Jansa’s Slovenian Democratic Party won the most votes in a 2018 election. Last year, a new coalition government led by the party had an approval rating of 65%.
This has since plunged to 26% and Jansa is so unpopular that allies are jumping ship. Street protests against him have attracted as many as tens of thousands of people, huge turnouts in a normally placid Alpine nation with a population of just 2 million.
Jansa has staggered on, narrowly surviving a no-confidence vote in parliament and a recent impeachment attempt by opposition legislators and defectors from his coalition.
But he has been so weakened “he does not have the power to do anything” other than curse foes on Twitter, said Ziga Turk, a professor and Cabinet minister in an earlier government headed by Jansa.
An admirer of Hungary’s Orban, Jansa has sought to bring the news media to heel, as nationalist governments in Hungary and Poland have largely succeeded in doing, at least with television.
But the only television station that consistently supports him, has less than 1% of the television audience on most days — that it does not even figure in ratings charts.
但是持續支持他的唯一一家電視台，多數日子只有不到1%電視觀眾收看，甚至上不了收視率排行榜。Source article: https://udn.com/news/story/6904/5607238
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