- Title: Austria prepares for presidential election
- Date: 1st December 2016
- Summary: ST. WOLFGANG, AUSTRIA (NOVEMBER 29, 2016) (REUTERS) ST. WOLFGANG WITH LAKE AND ALPS IN BACKGROUND CHURCH AND HOUSES BY LAKE ST. WOLFGANG AND LAKE ALPS STREET WITH ELECTION POSTER FEATURING NORBERT HOFER'S FACE AND READING (German): "AUSTRIA NEEDS SECURITY, NORBERT HOFER FOR THE FEDERAL PRESIDENT" POSTER READING (German): "AUSTRIA NEEDS SECURITY, NORBERT HOFER FOR THE FEDERAL PRESIDENT" VARIOUS OF POSTER FEATURING ALEXANDER VAN DER BELLEN, READING (German): "ONLY TOGETHER WE ARE AUSTRIA" PEOPLE STANDING IN SQUARE, LOOKING AT SHOPPING STANDS PEOPLE STANDING AROUND OUTDOOR TABLES, DRINKING AND EATING SNACKS AUSTRIA HATS AND OTHER SOUVENIRS ON DISPLAY IN FRONT OF SHOP GROUP OF PEOPLE WALKING IN STREET PEOPLE WALKING IN STREET PAST SHOPS TWO WOMEN SITTING ON WOODEN STEPS HOTEL ON LAKE PEOPLE SITTING ON STEPS, DRINKING FROM MUGS SUN REFLECTION ON LAKE (SOUNDBITE) (German) VOTER, OTTO STUMPER, SAYING: "As an Austrian I am for sure going to vote. It is difficult to decide whom to vote for. I will know on Sunday to whom I will give my vote." (SOUNDBITE) (German) VOTER, FRANZ SCHWEIGER SAYING: "Norbert Hofer will get many more votes, like Trump in America I think, and for me that is a bit dangerous." VIENNA, AUSTRIA (NOVEMBER 30, 2016) (REUTERS) ST. STEPHENS CATHEDRAL BELL TOWER VARIOUS OF PEOPLE WALKING IN STREET HORSE-DRAWN CARRIAGE IN STREET HORSE-DRAWN CARRIAGE AND BUS MOVING THROUGH STREET AUSTRIAN PRESIDENT'S OFFICE AUSTRIAN FLAG ON PRESIDENT'S OFFICE BUILDING SIGN READING (German): "OFFICE OF THE FEDERAL PRESIDENT. HOFBURG, IMPERIAL PALACE - LEOPOLD WING." VARIOUS OF ELECTION POSTERS FEATURING ALEXANDER VAN DER BELLEN VARIOUS OF ELECTION POSTERS FEATURING NORBERT HOFER VIENNA, AUSTRIA (DECEMBER 1, 2016) (REUTERS) POLITICAL ANALYST THOMAS HOFER WORKING IN HIS OFFICE HANDS OF THOMAS HOFER (SOUNDBITE) (German) POLITICAL ANALYST, THOMAS HOFER, SAYING: "Definitely there is a Trump effect. Not in the way that he (Trump) is now the main motivation for both sides, but it could have a positive effect on Hofer's side, as he can argue to his 'bored of elections' fans: 'Look we have a chance, it is possible, Trump proved it.' So this can be a factor of motivation. On the other hand Van der Bellen can try to use this Trump effect in raising fear and saying: 'For God's sake, we cannot allow something like that what happened in America to happen in our country.'" CARS DRIVING IN FRONT OF AUSTRIAN PARLIAMENT BUILDING AUSTRIAN FLAG FLYING ON PARLIAMENT BUILDING ENTRANCE TO PARLIAMENT WITH A RED RIBBON ABOVE ENTRANCE MARKING WORLD AIDS DAY CARS DRIVING IN FRONT OF PARLIAMENT VIENNA, AUSTRIA (RECENT - NOVEMBER 11, 2016) (REUTERS) ALEXANDER VAN DER BELLEN TALKING TO REPORTER (SOUNDBITE) (German) INDEPENDENT PRESIDENTIAL CANDIDATE, ALEXANDER VAN DER BELLEN, SAYING: "I think it would be bad for a small country like Austria that depends on exports and good relations with other countries - as half of the jobs in Austria depend on foreign economy - to support the disintegration of the EU. And that is what it is about. There is a crisis in the EU and we should not make that crisis bigger from the Austrian side." VIENNA, AUSTRIA (RECENT - NOVEMBER 17, 2016) (REUTERS) NORBERT HOFER TALKING TO REPORTER (SOUNDBITE) (German) FREEDOM PARTY PRESIDENTIAL CANDIDATE, NORBERT HOFER, SAYING: "When man recognises that a contract is not working, then a new contract must be forged and it has to be upheld." HAND OF HOFER (SOUNDBITE) (German) FREEDOM PARTY PRESIDENTIAL CANDIDATE, NORBERT HOFER, SAYING: "I hope that there will be something like a wake-up call, that people say, 'we realised that we made big mistakes, we went so far that we lost Great Britain, one of our most important member states. Now we have to do better.' That is what I trust and that is what I hope for."
- Embargoed: 16th December 2016 16:13
- Keywords: Austria Presidential Election vote Alexander Van der Bellen Norbert Hofer
- Location: ST. WOLFGANG / VIENNA, AUSTRIA
- City: ST. WOLFGANG / VIENNA, AUSTRIA
- Country: Austria
- Reuters ID: LVA0015B1ZN0N
- Aspect Ratio: 16:9
- Story Text: Austrians will vote on Sunday (December 4) on whether to choose a right wing head of state or to back an environmentalist candidate in a re-run of May's closely-fought election.
Former Green Party leader Alexander Van der Bellen is neck-and-neck with the right-wing Freedom Party (FPO) candidate Norbert Hofer in an election seen as the country's most important in decades.
For the first time in more than 50 years, Austria's highest office will be held neither by a social democrat nor a Christian democrat candidate.
The election held in May was won by Van der Bellen, but a rerun was ordered because of irregularities in the count of the postal ballots.
Hofer, a 45-year-old former aviation engineer who is campaigning on an anti-immigration platform, draws support from an anti-establishment sentiment and like U.S. president-elect Donald Trump, sees himself as a nationalist who recognises the concerns of ordinary people who believe they are ignored by a political establishment.
Van der Bellen is seeking to capitalise on Hofer's U-turn on Britain's Brexit vote.
Hofer initially said Austria could hold its own referendum on leaving the European Union within a year, but now no longer wants one.
The presidential run-off is too close to call, but the Freedom Party is leading in polls.
Against the background of the migration crisis, Sunday's contest will be watched across Europe as a barometer of anti-establishment sentiment and a test of support for populist right-wing politicians, following Britain's Brexit vote in June and ahead of elections in the Netherlands, France and Germany next year.
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