Voters Give Thumbs Down to Austerity Measures
In what can hardly be considered a surprise, voters in France, Greece and Italy have given an emphatic thumbs down to candidates who have supported austerity measures.
In France, Socialist Francois Hollande defeated Nicolas Sarkozy to become the new President of the country.
In Greece, voters turned on Conservative New Democracy and Socialist PASOK - two long-standing parties that were both in favor of the bailouts / austerity measures. According to the most recent polls, New Democracy garnered just under 20% of the vote while PASOK managed just 13.6%. In the last election, PASOK captured 44% of the vote.
In Italy's local elections, candidates opposed to austerity measures are making a strong showing.
The European Union has imposed harsh austerity measures in an effort to tame their debt crisis and shore up their currency. Austerity measures have been put into place not only in countries like Greece, but also in Germany, France and others.
Unsurprisingly, the austerity measures have proven to be unpopular with many EU citizens.
According to the dictionary, "austerity" is defined as "sternness or severity of manner or attitude". When a country implements "austerity measures", this usually involves a mixture of spending cuts and tax increases, neither of which are particularly popular.
The EU implemented these "austerity measures" in order to bring their deficits and debt levels into line.
Francois Hollande of France was particularly outspoken against the austerity measures. Instead, he argues, the country needs to spend more on teachers, housing, etc., and increase taxes on the "wealthy". French voters agreed with Hollande and elected him as the country's new President.
How will Germany and France, the two leaders of the European Union, be able to work together now that Hollande is in office? What will happen to the EU's austerity measures? What will happen to Greece? Which other pro-austerity leaders will fall?
Will the European Union be able to save their currency?
Filed under: General Knowledge