Extremism researcher: Panic is spreading in the AfD

The AfD was kicked out of the state parliament in Schleswig-Holstein, lost votes in the state elections in North Rhine-Westphalia and Saarland and also in the Local elections in Saxony achieved less than hoped for…

As a result, the AfD will lose influence and there will also be fewer posts to be filled. And the people who didn’t get anywhere in the right-wing camp before are now struggling for the fewer and fewer remaining posts. So there are now many gamblers who actually make a name for themselves with their enraged citizen stagings instead of selling themselves politically rationally – to the detriment of the party as a whole.

This is actually a cumulative process of radicalization, where certain things are mutually dependent and where the party can no longer get out.


Alexander Haeusler

Alexander Haeusler…
… is a research associate in the research area right-wing extremism/ neo-Nazism at the Düsseldorf University of Applied Sciences. The social scientist has observed the AfD since it was founded and has published numerous books and articles on the party.

What are the internal consequences for the party?

Panic is spreading more or less throughout the West German state associations, because this downward trend is also starting a spiral that needs to be countered. Because they realize that those who used to support the party are now leaving them in droves. That means that in some countries, especially in large areas like North Rhine-Westphalia, they are no longer campaignable. There is a lack of staff and opportunities for this, and there is also an ever-increasing dispute within the party.

What are the consequences of this dispute?

The party has always been at odds. It is a party of right-wing angry citizens. This means that the dispute is part of the gene of the party. But there used to be more to give away. Now it’s the other way around and undone. Of course, that intensifies the competition. Above all, this exacerbates the frustration, so that people then turn their backs on the party.

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