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Fringe or mainstream?

Reader comment on item: Who Are Europe's Most Important Politicians?

Submitted by Malcolm (Israel), Aug 3, 2018 at 04:15

All such political parties, whether classed as "left" or "right," begin on the fringe. Their greatest challenge comes when they are offered the opportunity to move into the mainstream. Will they adjust to the move or will they demonstrate by their conduct that they are determined to remain on the fringe?

Several of the politicians mentioned by Mr. Pipes have successfully made that move or successfully remained in the mainstream while shifting ideologically. In retrospect, it appears that Wilders decided to stay on the fringe when he staged his "Willen jullie meer of minder Marrokanen?" stunt ("Do you want more or less Moroccans?") on March 19, 2014. Several leading members of his party resigned, the party lost its lead in the polls and its prospects of participating in government seem to have vanished for ever. In fact, the Netherlands needs "more Moroccans" like the resolutely anti-Islamist Mayor of Rotterdam, Ahmed Aboutaleb, who recently illuminated city hall with the colors of the Israeli flag after a terrorist attack in Jerusalem.

As for Thierry Baudet, he has been dodging around the challenge, but it is bad news for him that he has lost his by far most important supporter, the philosopher Frank Ankersmit. Of course, the same challenge and question face not just political parties but all kinds of politically inspired movements, including think tanks.

Submitting....

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Note: Opinions expressed in comments are those of the authors alone and not necessarily those of Daniel Pipes. Original writing only, please. Comments are screened and in some cases edited before posting. Reasoned disagreement is welcome but not comments that are scurrilous, off-topic, commercial, disparaging religions, or otherwise inappropriate. For complete regulations, see the "Guidelines for Reader Comments".

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