Posted on March 4, 2024

AfD Wins Mayoral Election With 59% of the Vote

Zoltan Kottasz, European Conservative, March 4, 2024

Anti-globalist right-wing party AfD (Alternative für Deutschland) has clinched its third-ever mayoral seat, in a sign that the party is a force to be reckoned with. Rolf Weigand was elected on Sunday, March 3rd, as mayor of Großschirma, an eastern German town near Dresden, with a population of 6,000. Weigand, the AfD’s candidate, won convincingly, getting 59% of the votes in the first round of voting, making a second round unnecessary. An independent candidate came second with 22%, while the centre-right CDU’s candidate only managed to get 18%.

AfD has won mayoral elections in Raguhn-Jeßnitz (9,000 inhabitants) and Pirna (38,000 inhabitants) in recent months—both towns are in the eastern part of Germany, where the party is predicted to become the strongest political force after autumn elections in the states of Brandenburg, Saxony, and Thuringia. The party is also contesting June’s European Parliament elections and polls suggest it could finish second behind the CDU.

The continued electoral successes of AfD are a sign of disenchantment with the current German government, composed of the Social Democrats (SPD), the Greens and the liberal FDP. AfD has evolved from being a fringe party to a serious political force, demanding an end to illegal immigration and to harmful energy and green policies that are destroying the economy. The unpopularity of the federal government has led to the opposition CDU and AfD growing stronger even in left-wing-liberal strongholds such as Berlin.

The rise of the AfD has alarmed the political establishment which is hastily trying to come up with all sorts of ways to fight off the party, with some mainstream politicians even going as far as calling for the party to be banned. In the most recent developments, the domestic intelligence agency, the BfV—which operates under the supervision and direction of Germany’s interior minister—is preparing a dossier to use as a basis for which to justify the classification of the entire AfD as a “verified” right-wing extremist movement.

Not surprisingly, the Left were quick to condemn voters for choosing the right-wing candidate in Großschirma. Detlef Müller, vice chairman of the SPD’s Bundestag parliamentary group, called the election result “shameful,” adding that it “leaves us stunned.” AfD reacted by saying that Müller’s words were arrogant, and are an “incredible delegitimization of a democratic election.”