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Thursday, 12 October 2017 23:33

Meet the conservative, maybe populist, millennial who could run Austria

Written by  Kristen Soltis Anderson

Just months after France made history by electing a President in his thirties, Emmanuel Macron, yet another European nation is also poised to also put a young leader in charge.

Thirty-one year old Sebastian Kurz, leader of Austria's center-right People's Party (OVP), is on track to win Sunday's national elections.

In doing so, he will become the only millennial serving as the elected leader of a nation on the world stage. But the path Kurz is taking to his nation's highest office looks quite different from that of Macron, and highlights just how important populism has become these days to forming political coalitions that include the young.

For those in America just hearing of Kurz for the first time, it may be helpful to think of Kurz's political history as the equivalent of someone going from national College Republicans chair to becoming Secretary of State, all in extremely short order. Kurz's rise to power began through his work with the youth wing of the OVP and it is fair to say he made waves early on, rising rapidly through the ranks of his party. (The jaw-dropping opening of this Foreign Policy explainer on Kurz — it involves something called a "Horny-mobile" — is hard to imagine in American politics, especially coming from the center-right.

Read more at The Washington Examiner

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