Presidential election annulled
The Austrian Constitutional Court ruled yesterday that the 22nd May second round runoff of the country’s presidential election was annulled. The decision was reached after it was found that there had been breaches of the electoral code in the handling of twice the number of ballot papers than the majority of the winning candidate. For that reason the election was annulled and the second round runoff will have to be held again, probably in September or October.
In the 22nd May result the Independent candidate who is a former leader of the Austrian Greens, Alexander Van der Bellen, took 50.3% of the vote and 2,251,517 votes whilst his far-right Freedom Party of Austria (FPÖ) opponent, Norbert Hofer took 49.7% and 2,220,654 votes, just 30,863 votes behind.
Van der Bellen was due to be sworn in on 9th July but now outgoing Austrian president Heinz Fischer will be replaced on an interim basis by the three presidents of the National Council, a “National President Council.”