Which political processes hamper and benefit right populist parties' advances – lessons from the German case 1982-2012

Research Paper by Timo Lochocki



The period before the local and the European elections in 2014 in France represents a particular example for the rising of the populist movement. Recently the question of the Roma migrants from Romania and Bulgaria became one of the largely discussed and used by populist parties to mobilize voters. The political games put the Roma question as hot topic. Often Roma migrants are presented in negative lights: unwilling and uncapable to integrate, burden and threat for the French society. Moreover,the image of the Roma migrants embodies the fear of the migrants from Eastern Europe; it often represents a danger for French social security system. The reality and the positive examples lack the attention of the media and as a result people accept the negative image of the Roma created by the certain political parties together with the medias. Despite the existence of parties that position themselves against the migration and the Roma, there are few parties that take pro-Roma approach. Unfortunately, as the research suggests these claims serves only as a tool for gaining power, not for the Roma integration. Hence, either positive or negative, in both cases the Roma questions in France serves certain populist parties only for their political gain.