Eurobarometer: waarom gingen de Europeanen in juni wel of niet stemmen (en)

Met dank overgenomen van Europees Parlement (EP), gepubliceerd op dinsdag 28 juli 2009, 15:30.

Parliament has published a Eurobarometer survey of 26 830 people across Europe carried out in the month following the 4-7 June European elections. Citizens were asked about their reasons for choosing whether or not to vote, and, if they did vote, what factors they took into account in deciding which party to vote for.

Overall turnout in the elections was down compared with the 2004 elections by 2.47 percentage points, a smaller decline than in the past. This overall figure masks major national variations, with turnout up in eight Member States, about the same in a further eight, moderately lower in seven countries and markedly lower in four Member States.

Impact of election information campaigns

More than two-thirds of those surveyed (67 per cent) said they remembered seeing, hearing or reading information material encouraging them to vote. The proportions are similar among different age groups and users of different media.

Views of politics in general key factor

The main reasons cited by non-voters for their choice mainly relate to the wider political climate: a lack of confidence in politics in general (28 per cent), the view that voting makes no difference (17 per cent) or a lack of interest in politics (17 per cent). By contrast, only 10 per cent cited a lack of knowledge of the EU, EP or the elections and just 8 per cent said they were dissatisfied with the EP as an institution.

Socio-demographic analysis

The survey indicates that older citizens were more likely to vote than younger ones, and that those who had spent longer in education were more likely to vote than those who left school earlier. Those in senior or professional jobs were more likely to vote than those in low-paid work. The rate of abstention was particularly high (66.1 per cent) among those who say they have problems paying their regular bills.