HIGHLIGHTS-Europe votes for EU parliament

by Reuters
Sunday, 26 May 2019 23:03 GMT

(Adds latest projections, comments from candidates)

BRUSSELS, May 26 (Reuters) - Following are predictions of the European Parliament election results based on exit polls and some official results. Over 400 million people can vote in 28 countries, seven of which held ballots between Thursday and Saturday, with the remainder voting on Sunday (times CET):

0040 - EU - The European Union's top competition official, Margrethe Vestager, called on Sunday night for an end to the centre-right's hold on power in the bloc after European election, and for a first gendered-balance European Commission.

"The monopoly of power is broken. And this is of course why we can do something else," Vestager said.

0028 - EU - The centre-left candidate to head the next European Union's executive on Sunday ruled out building a coalition with far-right forces, calling for a "progressive" majority in the next European Parliament.

"My offer is on the table: let's sit together, the progressive forces in this parliament, let's try and find a programme for the next five years that will prepare Europe for the 30 years to come," said Frans Timmermans.

0018 - EU - The centre-right German candidate to head the next European Union's executive called for a broad alliance of pro-EU forces among socialists, liberals and greens after a continent-wide vote on Sunday.

"We are facing a shrinking centre," Manfred Weber said. "When I look to the figures, I don't see a majority against the liberals, I don't see a majority against the socialists, I don't see a majority against the European People's Party."

"So what I would ask us to do to is to join our forces to work together from now."

0020 - EU - The latest projections from the European Parliament estimate the European People's Party (EPP) will win 180 of the 751 seats in the European Parliament, followed by the Progressive Alliance of Socialists and Democrats (S&D) with 152. The Alliance of Liberals and Democrats for Europe and Renaissance (ALDE&R) was projected to win 105 seats, the Greens 67, the European Conservatives and Reformists Group (ECR) 61, Europe of Nations and Freedom Group (ENF) 57, the Europe of Freedom and Direct Democracy Group (EFDD) 54 and the Confederal Group of the European United Left/Nordic Green Left 38. The projection also showed 30 seats going to members not allied with any of the existing political groups in the outgoing Parliament and seven seats going to non-attached members.

2321 - SLOVAKIA - Liberal, pro-European coalition Progressive Slovakia/Together won the EU election in Slovakia with 20.1% of the vote, followed by the ruling leftist Smer party at 15.7%, official results showed. The far-right People's Party-Our Slovakia was third in the EU vote with 12.1%.

2319 - SPAIN - The Socialists won the EU election in Spain with 20 seats in the European Parliament, official results with over 98% of votes counted showed. The conservative People's Party (PP) won 12, centre-right Ciudadanos seven and far-right Vox three.

2318 - HUNGARY - Prime Minister Viktor Orban's ruling Fidesz party won just over 52% of votes Sunday on a hardline anti-immigration platform. The leftist Democratic Coalition was second with 16.26%, according to the national election office. The Momentum party was third with 9.92%, the Socialists won 6.68%, and nationalist Jobbik got 6.44%.

2309 - UK - Nigel Farage's Brexit Party looked to be in the lead in the country's elections to the European Parliament, according to the first result from Leeds. Farage said it looked like a big win for the Brexit Party in the EU elections. The results from Leeds showed the Brexit Party at 29%, followed by Labour with 20%, the Liberal Democrats with 18%, the Greens with 16% and the Conservatives at 7%.

2300 - ITALY - The far-right League overtook the 5-Star Movement as Italy's largest party during Sunday's EU election, according to exit polls. The 5-Star Movement lost a third of its voters this year and is expected to win between 18.5-23 percent of the vote. The League was predicted to take 26-31 percent and the centre-left Democratic Party was also expected to also surpass the 5-Star Movement with between 20.5-25 percent of the vote.

2233 - GREECE - Greek Prime Minister Alexis Tsipras called for a snap general election in June after the opposition party took the lead in Sunday's elections to European Parliament. Greek opposition leader Kyriakos Mitsotakis called for the resignation of Tsipras after Mitsotakis's party pulled ahead in the vote. Early election results showed Mitsotakis's New Democracy party leading Tsipras's Syriza party by up to nine points. Elections in Greece are scheduled to be held in October.

2102 - POLAND - Poland's ruling nationalist Law and Justice (PiS) party is expected to come first in the election with 42.4% of the vote, an exit poll showed. The opposition European Coalition - comprising the Civic Platform formerly led by European Council President Donald Tusk and a motley of leftist and rural politicians - scored second with 39.1%. As of 1500 GMT, voter turnout was 32.51% in Poland compared to 16.91% in 2014 at the same time, according to the election commission.

2050 - ROMANIA - The ruling Social Democrats (PSD) were tied with the opposition centrist National Liberty Party at 25.8%, according to exit polls. The poll showed a sharp decline in support for PSD, which won 45% in the last national ballot in 2016.

2036 - FRANCE - An Elysee official said French President Emmanuel Macron's loss to Marine Le Pen's far-right party in the EU elections was "disappointing", but would not prompt a change in the government's reform drive.

"There is of course some disappointment," an Elysee official said. "But the score is absolutely honourable compared to how incumbents did in previous European elections. There was no sanction."

2011 - EU - The EPP is expected to remain the largest party in the EU Parliament with 173 of 751 seats, according to the first European Parliament estimate. The S&D follow closely behind with 147 seats and the ALDE+R is projected to win 102. The Greens are projected to win 71 seats and the combined two far-right parties are expected to get 113.

2004 - SPAIN - Socialists are expected to win 18 of Spain's EU Parliament seats, according to an exit poll, a gain of 4 seats from 2014. Far-right Vox is predicted to get its first members in EU Parliament, with four to five seats. The Ciudadanos and Catalan separatists are also expected to win seats. The Conservative People's Party is predicted to lose seats, dropping to 11-12 from 16 in 2014.. Voter turnout was nearly 50% in Spain at 1600 GMT, up from 34 percent in 2014.

2000 - CROATIA - According to the first exit polls on the state television, the ruling conservative HDZ party won four out of 12 seats in the European Parliament, slightly below opinion polls, which gave it five seats (some even six). The ruling conservatives have a pro-EU agenda. The main opposition party, the Social Democrats won three seats, according to the exit polls. The recently formed anti-corruption party led by a judge Mislav Kolakusic should take one seat. Also, the populist "Human Shield" gets one seat alongside two nationalist parties "Suverenisti" and "Neovisni za Hrvatsku". All three have an anti-EU agenda. A liberal pro-EU coalition "Amsterdamska koalicija" also wins one seat. Croatia will have 11 seats in the EU Parliament until the UK leaves the EU. Then Croatia is to get one seat more.

2000 - FRANCE - The far-right Rassemblement National party is predicted to win in France with 24 seats followed by French President Emmanuel Macron's party with 23 seats. The Greens are predicted to be in third place, with 13% of the vote.

1945 - EU - The European Parliament first estimate of the turnout in the elections is 49-52% against 42.61% in the 2014 election.

1917 - BULGARIA - The ruling centre-right GERB party of Prime Minister Boyko Borissov won 30.5-32.7% of the vote, according to exit polls by two independent pollsters. The win gives Borissov's coalition government a breath of fresh air after a scandal over purchases of luxury properties at low prices. Opposition Socialists came in second with 23.2-25.4% and the ethnic Turkish MRF party won 12.8-13.6%, the exit polls showed.

1922 - HUNGARY - Hungary's ruling Fidesz, the party of Prime Minister Viktor Orban, was expected to win 56% of votes, state television reported. The Socialists and leftist Democratic Coalition were estimated to win 10% each, nationalist Jobbik was predicted to get 9% and the Momentum party 7%.

1810 - NETHERLANDS - ALDE+R TAKES THE LEAD

ALDE+R are expected to win six out of the Netherlands' 26 seats in the EU Parliament, according to an exit poll. The European Conservatives and Reformists group (ECR) and the S&D follow with five seats each. The EPP is expected to win four and the Greens three. The Confederal Group of the European United Left and Nordic Green Left (GUE/NGL), the Europe of Nations and Freedom (ENF) and one other are all projected to win one seat each.

1810 - MALTA - S&D TAKES THE LEAD OVER EPP

The S&D are projected to win four of Malta's six seats in the EU Parliament and the EPP two.

1810 - IRELAND - GUE/NGL TIED WITH EPP FOR SEATS

Both the GUE/NGL and EPP parties are estimated to win four seats respectively out of Ireland's 11 seats in the EU Parliament, according to an exit poll. The Greens are projected to win two seats and ALDE+R one.

1810 - GERMANY - GREENS POLLING SECOND

Chancellor Angela Merkel's governing coalition, the CDU/CSU, is projected to win 28 of Germany's 96 seats for the EPP in the EU Parliament, according to an exit poll. The Greens are projected to come in second with 23 seats, followed by S&D with 16 seats, EFDD with 10, ALDE+R with eight, GUE/NGL with five seats, three non-attached members and three others.

1810 - AUSTRIA - EPP TO BE THE BIGGEST PARTY

The EPP is projected to win seven of Austria's 18 seats in the EU Parliament, according to an exit poll, followed by S&D with five, ENF with three seats, the Greens with two and ALDE+R with one.

1810 - CYPRUS - DEMOCRATIC RALLY LEADS

The Cypriot Democratic Rally is projected to win 38.5% of the votes for EU Parliament, followed by the Progressive Alliance of Working People at 26% and the Democratic Party at 11.9%, according to an exit poll. Two of the six EU Parliament seats Cyprus has would go to the GUE/NGL party, two to S&D and two to the EPP.

1805 - GREECE - OPPOSITION CONSERVATIVES LEAD IN TV STATIONS' EXIT POLL

The Greek opposition conservatives New Democracy took the lead over the ruling leftist Syriza party in the EU elections, according to a joint exit poll by five private TV stations. New Democracy had 36-32 percent of the vote and Syriza, the party of Tsipras, had 29-25 percent, according to the poll.

1745 - AUSTRIA - KURZ'S PARTY LEADS IN POLLS-BASED PROJECTION

A polls-based projection showed the party of Austrian Chancellor Sebastian Kurz leading in the EU election Sunday, the day before he faces a no-confidence motion. The projection found support for Kurz's party, the conservative People's Party, at 34.5%, followed by the Social Democrats at 23.5% and the far-right Freedom Party at 17.5%. (Reporting by EU bureaux Writing by Daphne Psaledakis)

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