09 November 2023

European Parliament seat projection (November 2023): EPP takes big lead – historic shift to the right possible

By Manuel Müller

EP today3772141101178666050
Sept. 2343461479116277743743
Nov. 2343431379017078763845
Baseline scenario,
as of 06/11/2023.

Dynamic scenario,
as of 06/11/2023.

Is that it? Two months ago, the last European Parliament seat projection suggested that the race for first place in the upcoming European elections could get really exciting: For about a year, the lead of the European People’s Party (EPP) had been shrinking slowly but steadily, and the Socialists and Democrats (S&D) were gradually closing in. In recent weeks, however, the gap has widened considerably and is now back to the level it was at the end of 2022. The EPP is, once again, the clear favourite to remain the strongest force in the European Parliament in 2024.

At the same time, the other centre-left groups are also losing support, while the far-right parties continue to make gains. As a result, a shift to the right of historic proportions is beginning to emerge: If elections were held this week, the centre-left alliance of Socialists, Liberals, Greens and the Left would be weaker than ever. At the same time, the two far-right groups, the ECR and the ID, could together win more than a quarter of the seats in the European Parliament for the first time.

EPP makes significant gains

To take things in turn: Since the beginning of the year, the polls had brought little good news for the EPP. The party had been on a slow downward trend, and while it didn’t suffer sudden major losses in any of the member states, its number of seats in the prediction was gradually falling to record lows.

In recent weeks, however, this dynamic has changed. In several large member states, in particular Germany and Spain, the EPP has made inroads, and it has exceeded expectations in the national parliamentary elections in both Poland and Luxembourg in October. There are other countries, for example Austria, Portugal and Latvia, where things are still not going quite so well for the EPP. But overall, the group now stands at 170 seats again in the baseline projection – a significant gain compared to September (+8) and its best result for over a year. In the dynamic scenario, which also takes into account the possibility of new member parties joining the group, the EPP would even return to 178 seats, the same number as in the current Parliament.

S&D expells its Slovak members

For the S&D, on the other hand, the current seat projection shows a steep downward trend. The Socialists have completely lost the gains they made in late summer (137 seats / –10 compared to September). This is partly due to weaker poll results, especially in the large member states. Only in few countries, such as Greece and Finland, the Socialists have continued to grow in the polls.

However, the main cause of the Socialists’ losses in the seat projection is a different one – namely the suspension of the two Slovakian S&D members Smer and Hlas. At the end of September, Smer had won the Slovakian parliamentary elections with a socially conservative and Russia-friendly agenda, and subsequently formed a coalition with Hlas and the far-right SNS (close to ID). The S&D reacted promptly by expelling the two parties.

With this decision, the S&D has put a coherent line on key value issues ahead of the goal of becoming the largest group in the Parliament (and possibly claiming the Commission presidency). Having always criticised the EPP for siding with Hungary’s Fidesz for too long, the Socialists apparently felt that their own credibility was at stake now. Although a return of Smer and Hlas does not seem completely out of the question – for the time being, their membership of the group has only been “suspended” –, it is unlikely to happen before the European elections.

RE at a three-year low

The last two months have also brought poor polls for the other centre-left groups in the European Parliament. The liberal-centrist Renew Europe (RE) has recently made gains in some countries, such as the Czech Republic, Slovakia, Denmark, and the Netherlands. However, some particularly strong RE member parties lost ground, notably the governing parties in France, Slovenia, and Estonia.

In sum, RE now stands at 90 seats (–1) in the projection – its worst result since summer 2020. The Liberals remain in third place behind the EPP and the S&D, but are only slightly ahead of the ECR and the ID.

Hard times for Greens and Left

The European Greens have suffered another setback, too. While the German Grüne have stopped their downward slide for the time being, the Latvian Progresīvie are falling back in the polls after a summer surge. Spain’s Sumar has also seen a slight downturn recently, and Luxembourg’s Gréng, having suffered a debacle in October’s national elections, would not even enter the European Parliament currently. In Portugal, however, the animal rights party PAN can now hope to win a seat, bringing the Greens/EFA group to a total of 43 (–3).

The Left, on its part, has suffered slight losses in some countries, such as Greece and the Netherlands. However, the French communist party PCF has just made it above the national five-per-cent threshold in the latest polls and would therefore enter the European Parliament with several MEPs. This is enough to compensate for the losses in the other member states, but not to end the Left’s drought that has lasted since the summer: Overall, the group remains unchanged at 43 seats (±0).

Far right continues to gain ground

Meanwhile, on the other side of the political the ECR and ID were able to consolidate their gains of recent months. The ECR remained stable in most countries and made slight inroads in Latvia, bringing its total to 78 seats (+1).

The ID, in turn, made gains in France and especially in the Netherlands; in Belgium it fell slightly but would still be the strongest national force. Overall, the ID now stands at 76 seats (+2). Even in the baseline scenario, both far-right groups are thus well above their current parliamentary strength.

Non-attached and “other” parties

In addition, many of the non-attached and “other” parties (which are currently not represented in the Parliament and cannot be clearly assigned to any political group) are also leaning to the right and likely to join the ECR or ID after the European election.

In recent weeks, however, the performance of these non-attached right-wing parties has been somewhat weaker than in the months before. The French party Reconquête is falling back, and Hungary’s Jobbik and Slovakia’s Republika wouldn’t currently win any seats in the European Parliament at all. Still, the seat number of non-attached parties increases slightly in the projection (38 seats / +1), but this is only due to the expulsion of Smer from the S&D.

Among the right-leaning “other” parties, Konfederacja from Poland and BBB and NSC from the Netherlands have recently lost ground, while Bulgaria’s Vazrazhdane has gained ground. The centrist ZZS from Latvia and the left-green MERA25 from Greece also increased their support. Completely new to the table are the Irish Social Democrats, who could win a seat in the European Parliament for the first time. (The seat projection doesn’t yet include Germany’s “Bündnis Sahra Wagenknecht”, a left-wing conservative party that was announced in October but not yet officially founded, and for which there are no serious polling figures.)

Dynamic scenario: Historically strong far-right parties …

The dynamic scenario of the seat projection assigns each of the “other” parties to one of the existing parliamentary groups and also takes into account possible, but not yet certain, group changes of other national parties. The resulting picture can be quite uncertain in detail, but overall it may be closer to the actual distribution of seats after the European elections than the baseline scenario.

All political groups fare slightly better in the dynamic scenario than in the baseline. However, the two far-right groups – which could see their ranks joined by, among others, the Hungarian Fidesz (ID) and the French Reconquête (ECR) – make particularly strong gains. With 92 and 89 seats respectively, ID and ECR would then be almost on a par with the liberal RE (96).

Taken together, the two groups would account for just over a quarter of the entire Parliament (181 out of 720 seats). This would be a historic record: even in the 1979 and 1984 European elections, the groups to the right of the EPP were not as strong – although at that time they also included parties such as the British Tories and the French Gaullists.

… but the pro-European majority is safe

It remains to be seen, however, how much this rise of the far right will also change the daily practices of the Parliament. So far, the two right-wing groups have played only a minor role: an informal “grand coalition of the pro-European centre” – consisting of the EPP, S&D and RE, often supplemented by the Greens/EFA – is responsible for most decisions in the European Parliament.

According to the seat projection, this alliance would be weaker than ever. However, with 412 out of 720 seats (459 out of 720 if the Greens are included), it would still have a safe majority. How far the political line of the European Parliament shifts to the right in the next parliamentary term will therefore depend less on the right-wing parties themselves, and more on whether the parties of the centre adapt their positions and open up to cooperation with the right.

Key role of the EPP

It is therefore the decline of the centre-left, rather than the gains of the far right, that could have the greatest impact on the next term of the European Parliament. If the seat projections come true, the Socialists, Liberals, Greens and Left together would be weaker than ever before – and with 327 out of 720 seats, far from a joint majority. De facto, decisions in the European Parliament would therefore only be possible with the EPP, which in turn would have three different majority options at its disposal: with S&D and RE (412 seats), with RE and ECR (363), or even with ECR and ID (359).

Whether this actually happens is, of course, up to the European voters. Polls and seat projections are only snapshots of the political mood, and the 2024 European election campaign is only just beginning.

The overview

The following table breaks down the distribution of seats in the projection by individual national parties. The table follows the baseline scenario, in which each national party is attributed to its current parliamentary group (or to the parliamentary group of their European political party) and parties without a clear attribution are labelled as “other”.

In contrast, the dynamic scenario of the seat projection assigns each “other” party to the parliamentary group to which it is politically closest, and also takes into account other possible future group changes of individual national parties. In the table, the changes in the dynamic scenario compared to the baseline scenario are indicated by a coloured font and a mouseover text.

In the absence of pan-European election polls, the projection is based on an aggregation of national polls and election results from all member states. The specific data basis for each country is explained in the small print below the table. For more information on European parties and political groups in the European Parliament, click here.

EP today3772141101178666050
Sept. 2343461479116277743743
Nov. 2343431379017078763845

DE 4 Linke 13 Grüne
1 Piraten
1 Volt
15 SPD 5 FDP
3 FW
29 Union
1 Familie

20 AfD 2 Partei 1 Tier
7 EELV 8 PS 17 Ens 7 LR
25 RN 5 Rec


17 PD 5 Az-+EU 7 FI
25 FdI 8 Lega 14 M5S
ES 5 Sumar
1 Bildu
2 Sumar
24 PP 7 Vox
1 Junts


3 Lewica 2 PL2050
20 KO
2 KP
22 PiS

4 Konf

13 PSD 5 USR 8 PNL

NL 1 PvdD 3 GL 3 PvdA 7 VVD
2 D66

BE 3 PTB 1 Groen
1 Ecolo
2 Vooruit
2 PS
2 MR
2 CD&V
1 LE
3 N-VA 3 VB

2 Piráti

1 TOP09

EL 3 Syriza
8 ND 1 EL
2 KKE 1 PE
1 MERA25
1 Spart

5 DK

10 Fidesz 2 MHM
1 PAN 7 PS 2 IL 6 PSD
3 CH

SE 2 V 1 MP 8 S 1 C
4 M
5 SD

2 Grüne 5 SPÖ 2 Neos 4 ÖVP



3 V
DK 1 Enhl. 2 SF 4 S 3 V
2 LA
1 M
1 K

1 DD

1 D

4 Smer-SSD 3 Hlas-SD
FI 1 Vas 1 Vihreät 4 SDP 2 Kesk 4 Kok 3 PS


3 FF 4 FG

1 SD


2 Možemo
1 Most
1 DP

1 Prog

2 JV
2 NA

1 S!

1 SD 3 GS 4 SDS
1 NSi


1 SDE 1 RE
1 KE
2 Isamaa






3 PL
3 PN

Development (baseline scenario)

06/11/2023 43 43 137 90 170 78 76 38 45
11/09/2023 42+1 46 144+3 90+1 157+5 77 72+2 36+1 41+2
17/07/2023 41 48 136 94 160 79 70 36 41
22/05/2023 49 50 137 92 162 79 67 33 36
27/03/2023 44 42 137 94 162 78 68 38 42
01/02/2023 50 42 135 96 168 78 65 37 34
06/12/2022 51 44 136 93 166 79 64 37 35
12/10/2022 52 42 127 100 169 79 63 35 38
20/08/2022 52 47 134 98 170 75 63 27 39
22/06/2022 54 44 133 101 165 77 64 31 36
25/04/2022 59 39 139 97 157 78 64 38 34
01/03/2022 53 36 139 98 158 78 62 45 36
04/01/2022 51 39 142 99 165 73 62 34 40
08/11/2021 50 42 144 96 155 75 72 36 35
13/09/2021 54 42 141 98 160 70 75 33 32
21/07/2021 52 45 133 97 167 71 74 31 35
24/05/2021 50 50 125 95 167 74 73 33 38
29/03/2021 52 46 136 96 164 71 73 34 33
02/02/2021 52 45 135 94 184 70 71 21 33
09/12/2020 52 47 136 93 188 67 73 20 29
12/10/2020 51 49 127 96 193 67 71 21 30
14/08/2020 50 53 145 88 196 65 64 20 24
25/06/2020 48 55 143 91 203 64 63 20 18
26/04/2020 47 53 151 88 202 66 66 19 13
10/03/2020 51 58 138 88 188 67 82 21 12
09/01/2020 49 58 135 93 186 65 82 24 13
23/11/2019 48 57 138 99 181 62 82 22 16
23/09/2019 49 61 139 108 175 56 82 24 11
30/07/2019 47 64 138 108 180 57 82 22 7
EP 2019 40 68 148 97 187 62 76 27

The “EP 2019” line indicates the distribution of seats as of July 2, 2019, when the European Parliament was constituted following the election in May 2019.
The table shows the values of the baseline scenario without the United Kingdom. Until September 2023, the seat projection is based on 705 seats, thereafter on 720 seats. In the figures for September 2023, the transition is marked by superscript numbers.
An overview of the values including the United Kingdom for the period up to January 2020 can be found here. An overview of older projections from the 2014-2019 electoral period is here.
The full names of the parliamentary groups and of the national parties appear as mouseover text when the mouse pointer is held motionless on the designation in the table for a short time. If a party is attributed to a different parliamentary group in the dynamic scenario than in the baseline scenario, this is also indicated in the mouseover text.

Attribution of national parties to parliamentary groups

Baseline scenario: For the projection, parties that are already represented in the European Parliament are assigned to their current parliamentary group, unless they have explicitly declared that they will change group after the next European election. National parties that are not currently represented in the European Parliament, but belong to a European political party, are attributed to the parliamentary group of that party. In cases where the members of a national electoral list are expected to split up and join different political groups after the election, the projection uses the allocation that seems most plausible in each case (see below). Parties for which the allocation to a specific parliamentary group is unclear are classified as “other” in the baseline scenario.
According to the Rules of Procedure of the European Parliament, at least 23 MEPs from at least a quarter of the member states are required to form a parliamentary group. Groupings marked with an asterisk (*) would not currently meet these conditions according to the projection. After the European election, they would therefore have to win over additional MEPs in order to be able to constitute themselves as a parliamentary group.
Dynamic scenario: In the dynamic scenario, all “other” parties are assigned to an already existing parliamentary group (or to the group of non-attached members). In addition, the dynamic scenario also takes into account other group changes that appear politically plausible, even if the respective parties have not yet been publicly announced them. To highlight these changes from the baseline scenario, parties that are assigned to a different parliamentary group in the dynamic scenario are marked in the table with the colour of that group; moreover, the name of the group appears in the mouseover text. The attributions in the dynamic scenario are based on a subjective assessment of the political orientation and strategy of the parties and can therefore be quite uncertain in detail. From an overall perspective, however, the dynamic scenario may be closer to the real distribution of seats after the next European election than the baseline scenario.

Data source

If available, the most recent poll of voting intentions for the European Parliament is used to calculate the seat distribution for each country. In case that more than one poll has been published, the average of all polls from the two weeks preceding the most recent poll is calculated, taking into account only the most recent poll from each polling institute. The cut-off date for taking a survey into account is the last day of its fieldwork, if known, otherwise the day of its publication.
For countries where there are no specific European election polls or where the last such poll was taken more than a fortnight ago, the most recent poll available for the national parliamentary election or the average of all polls for the national or European Parliament from the two weeks preceding the most recent poll available is used instead. For countries where there are no recent polls for parliamentary elections, polls for presidential elections may be used instead, with the presidential candidates’ polling figures assigned to their respective parties (this concerns France and Cyprus in particular). For member states for which no recent polls can be found at all, the results of the last national or European elections are used.
As a rule, the national poll results of the parties are directly converted to the total number of seats in the country. For countries where the election is held in regional constituencies without proportional representation (currently Belgium and Ireland), regional polling data is used where available. Where this is not the case, the number of seats is still calculated for each constituency individually, but using the overall national polling data in each case. National electoral thresholds are taken into account in the projection where they exist.
In Belgium, constituencies in the European election correspond to language communities, while polls are usually conducted at the regional level. The projection uses polling data from Wallonia for the French-speaking community and polling data from Flanders for the Dutch-speaking community. For the German-speaking community, it uses the result of the last European election (1 seat for CSP).
In countries where it is common for several parties to run as an electoral alliance on a common list, the projection makes a plausibility assumption about the composition of these lists. In the table, such multi-party lists are usually grouped under the name of the electoral alliance or of its best-known member party. Sometimes, however, the parties of an electoral alliance split up after the election and join different political groups in the European Parliament. In this case, the parties are listed individually and a plausibility assumption is made about the distribution of seats on the joint list. This concerns the following parties: Italy: SI (place 1 and 3 on the list) and EV (2, 4); Spain: ERC (1, 3-4), Bildu (2) and BNG (5); PNV (1) and CC (2); Poland: PL2050 (1, 3, 5 etc.) and KP (2, 4, 6 etc.); Netherlands: GL (1, 3, 5 etc.) and PvdA (2, 4, 6 etc.); Hungary: Fidesz (1-6, from 8) and KDNP (7); Slovakia: PS (1) and D (2).
In the Czech Republic, ODS, TOP09 and KDU-ČSL run on a joint list in the European election, but appear separately in national polls. The seat projection assigns each of the three parties the number of seats they would win individually, but disregards the national electoral threshold clause for them.
In Spain, it is assumed that among the members of Sumar, two thirds will join the Left and one third will join the Greens/EFA group. Moreover, it is assumed that among the members of the Spanish political alliance Sumar, two thirds will join the Left and one third will join the Greens/EFA group.
In France, several centre-left parties (LFI, PS, EELV, PCF) have joined forces to form the electoral alliance NUPES for the 2022 national parliamentary election. However, it is unlikely that this alliance will last in the next European election. In the projection, the poll ratings or electoral results of the alliance are therefore divided among the individual parties according to the ratio of the average poll ratings of the parties in the most recent polls that showed them individually.
Since there is no electoral threshold for European elections in Germany, parties can win a seat in the European Parliament with less than 1 per cent of the vote. Since German polling institutes do not usually report values for very small parties, the projection includes them based on their results at the last European election (2 seats each for PARTEI and FW, 1 seat each for Tierschutzpartei, ödp, Piraten, Volt and Familienpartei). Only if a small party achieves a better value in current polls than in the last European election, the poll rating is used instead.
In Italy, a special rule makes it easier for minority parties to enter the European Parliament. In the projection, the Südtiroler Volkspartei is therefore always listed with its result in the last European election (1 seat).
The following overview lists the data source for each member state. The dates refer to the last day of the fieldwork; if this is not known, to the day of publication of the polls:
Germany: national polls, 25/10-4/11/2023, source: Wikipedia.
France: European election polls, 12/10/2023, source: Wikipedia.
Italy: national polls, 26/10-3/11/2023, source: Wikipedia.
Spain: national polls, 22/10-4/11/2023, source: Wikipedia.
Poland: national polls, 22/10/2023, source: Wikipedia.
Romania: national polls, 22-25/9/2023, source: Wikipedia.
Netherlands: national polls, 24/10-4/11/2023, source: Wikipedia.
Belgium, Dutch-speaking community: regional polls (Flanders) for the national parliamentary election, 25/9-9/10/2023, source: Wikipedia.
Belgium, French-speaking community: regional polls (Wallonie) for the national parliamentary election, 25/9-9/10/2023, source: Wikipedia.
Belgium, German-speaking community: results of the European election, 26/5/2019.
Czech Republic: national polls, 29/9-2/10/2023, source: Wikipedia.
Greece: national polls, 24/10-2/11/2023, source: Wikipedia.
Ungarn: national polls, 13/10/2023, source: Wikipedia.
Portugal: national polls, 23-24/10/2023, source: Wikipedia.
Sweden: national polls, 20/10-2/11/2023, source: Wikipedia.
Austria: national polls, 30/10-3/11/2023, source: Wikipedia.
Bulgaria: national polls, 8/10/2023, source: Wikipedia.
Denmark: national polls, 5/11/2023, source: Wikipedia.
Slovakia: results of the national parliamentary election, 30/9/2023, source: Wikipedia.
Finland: national polls, 31/10/2023, source: Wikipedia.
Ireland: national polls, 25/10-3/11/2023, source: Wikipedia.
Croatia: national polls, 20-25/10/2023, source: Wikipedia.
Lithuania: national polls, 21/10/2023, source: Wikipedia.
Latvia: national polls, October 2023, source: Wikipedia.
Slovenia: national polls, 11-19/10/2023, source: Wikipedia.
Estonia: national polls, 18-20/10/2023, source: Wikipedia.
Cyprus: first round results of the national presidential election, 5/2/2023, source: Wikipedia.
Luxembourg: results of the national parliamentary election, 8/10/2023, source: Wikipedia.
Malta: national polls, 26/10/2023, source: Wikipedia.

Pictures: all graphs: Manuel Müller.

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