Kern’s Social Democrats (SPO) and Sebastian Kurz’s conservative People’s Party (ÖVP) are coalition partners and have dominated Austrian politics for decades, but are now at daggers drawn.
An early election would give the far-right Freedom Party (FPÖ), currently leading in opinion polls, a good chance of entering national government less than a year after its candidate lost a presidential runoff._________________________
However, some surveys have suggested the ÖVP would leap from third to first place if the 30-year-old Kurz, who takes a tough stance on immigration, became its leader. Forming a government in Austria usually requires at least two parties.
“There will definitely … be an election, I assume in the coming autumn,” Kern told ORF TV. He had resisted the idea of a snap election, calling for the coalition to keep working until its term ends in more than a year’s time.