Austrian communists regain northeastern municipal council seats

The Communist Party of Austria (KPO) has won seats in four municipalities of the northeastern State of Lower Austria, while the Party of Labour of Austria (PdA) has won one municipal seat

February 04, 2020 by Peoples Dispatch
Lower Austria elections
The Communist Party of Austria (KPÖ) has won seats in four municipalities.

In the municipal council elections held in the last week of January in the northeastern State of Lower Austria, the communists have managed to secure representation after a significant period of time. The Communist Party of Austria (KPÖ) has won seats in four municipalities. The conservative Austrian People’s Party (OVP) has emerged with 7,000 municipal seats (52.69% votes), and the Social Democrats (SPÖ) have won 3,130 seats (27.76% votes).

Perspective Communiste reported that In Laa an der Thaya (district of Mistelbach), the KPÖ won three seats and 10.77% of the votes. In Fischamend (district of Bruck ad Leitha), the KPÖ list received 12.45% of the votes and three seats, exceeding the SPÖ list. At Dunkelsteinerwald (district of Melk), with 12.35% of the votes and two seats, the KPÖ came ahead of the Greens. KPÖ also won representation in Krems municipality. The Party of Labour of Austria (PdA) won a seat in the Neusiedl an der Zaya municipality (district of Gänserndorf) with 5.4% of votes.

KPÖ spokeswoman Christiane Maringer said, “With these local council elections, the political map in Lower Austria has turned even blacker, but our deep red blobs are important and valuable. Our clear social, ecological and anti-racist profile must continue to be carried into all political contexts in which we can be active. Elections are nice affirmations.”

Since the fall of the eastern bloc socialist states, the KPÖ has never secured any representation in the municipalities in the region. 

Meanwhile, the Greens improved their vote share to 5.9% in the elections, while the far-right Freedom Party of Austria (FPÖ) got only 5.81% of the votes and 486 seats, haunted by the Ibiza Gate scandal of May 2019 which revolves around a video secretly recorded in Ibiza, Spain, involving the top leadership of the FPÖ and their corrupt practices. 

In the Styria State elections held in November last year, the KPÖ had improved its tally by winning three seats and securing 6.02% of the overall votes polled.