According to projected results, the populist right appears to have gained the largest vote share in Switzerland’s general election, receiving 29 percent of the vote.

The right-wing populist Swiss People’s Party (SVP), which ran a campaign against mass migration and “woke madness,” comfortably won Sunday’s Swiss general election, according to projections made after the ballots closed.

“Drag queens, antifas and climate activists are all going to vote! At the polls, they could ruin Switzerland and our society. We won’t let them!” the SVP youth wing said in a final push for votes.

The SVP increased its share of the vote to 29%, 3.4 percentage points higher than the last election in 2019, according to the final projection of Swiss broadcaster SRF.

The polling stations closed at noon (10:00 GMT), with the overwhelming majority of Swiss electors having already mailed in their ballots over the course of the previous four weeks.

The SVP placed well clear of the left-leaning Social Democrats, which gained a paltry 17 percent, while the center-right party The Centre and the right-leaning FDP placed third and fourth, respectively. The Liberals and the Conservatives were on track to conclude with roughly 15 percent of the vote, while the three pursuing parties are essentially stagnating.

The projection indicates that the Greens were unable to replicate their significant gains at the previous election in 2019 and fell four percentage points to finish fifth with nine percent of the vote.

The European nation of 8.8 million people cast ballots for all 200 seats in the National Council and all 46 seats in the Council of States in the election.

The SVP, which is staunchly anti-EU, defends Switzerland’s long-standing military neutrality, and believes that this principle has been overly tested in recent months.

Switzerland is not a member of the European Union, but it has adopted similar economic sanctions against Russia in response to Moscow’s invasion of Ukraine.

The tiny nation has shown populist inclinations before. In 2021, Swiss voters approved a proposal for a “burqa ban” in another test of European attitudes about Muslims.

The SVP also helped push back against outgoing President Alain Berset of the Socialist Party, helping to make it his last year in office. Known as “Mr. Covid” during the pandemic, he became notorious for strolling the streets of Bern to check if people were following Covid lockdowns. His presidency is ending amid a slew of scandals.

Also in October, New Zealanders elected a new conservative government, with incumbent Prime Minister Chris Hipkins conceding his center-left Labour Party’s six-year reign was over. Hipkins replaced former prime minister Jacinda Ardern.

The National Party and its coalition partner ACT thus secured the majority in New Zealand’s  parliament.

Christopher Luxon, who is the prime minister-in-waiting, said New Zealanders had “reached for hope and voted for change.”


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