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National Populist Party in Spain Enters Parliament With Historic Election Showing

Vox is the latest populist party to catch fire in Europe.

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Spain’s ‘Vox’ Party has become the latest populist movement to secure a strong presence in a European national parliament, picking up 24 seats in Sunday’s Spanish election.

Speaking about his party’s historic showing, Vox’s leader Santiago Abascal invoked the 15th century ‘Reconquista,’ when Spain recovered its territory from Islamic states, comparing it to the election results.

We told you that we were going to begin a reconquering of Spain and that’s what we have done.”

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Vox has gained popularity on the basis of a political platform that opposes mass immigration, feminism and Islamization. Some in European politics had considered Spain to be one of the nations immune to a continent-wide movement of nationalists and patriots challenging the decades-long dominance of neoliberals in national governments and the European Union.

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The party has quickly filled a void in the southern European nation many had hoped would be filled by a real right-wing party, as many Spaniards had grown frustrated with the ineffectual centrist Popular Party. Spain’s Socialist Party held its control of government, but will have to govern in a coalition with other leftist and liberal parties. The center-right Citizen’s Party also siphoned voters from the Popular Party, which took a distant second place with 66 seats in parliament.

Separatist sentiment growing in regions of the country may have played a role in facilitating the growth of nationalism in Spain. The region of Catalonia has been seeking to secede from Spain since 2017, declaring independence unilaterally in defiance of the Spanish constitution.

Vox subscribes to a ‘soft Euroskepticism’ commonly supported by other right-wing continental European parties such as Poland’s Law and Justice and Hungary’s Fidesz. As opposed to outright leaving the European Union, Vox would seek to reform the globalist political union to recognize and promote the national sovereignty of its member-states. Under such a vision, EU member-states could gain from a regulated and balanced free-trade zone without being made subject to unlimited mass immigration from within the Schengen Area and political domination from unelected bureaucrats in Brussels.

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Canadian Police Report Almost 2,200 Home Visits To Monitor Quarantine Compliance

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Canadian police officers reportedly have conducted almost 2,200 home visits to ensure travelers into the country are complying with quarantine rules.

In late March, the Canadian government announced the start of the Quarantine Act, which mandates that anyone entering the country, with the exception of essential workers like truck drivers and those in healthcare, must self-isolate for 14 days.

Failure to comply can incur a fine of up to $750,000 and/or six months in prison. However, so far there have been no arrests, and only one fine of $1,000.

Still, many may find unsettling the degree to which the Canadian police, in coordination with official border and health services, are enforcing a nanny state by paying home visits to incoming travelers deemed at risk of non-compliance. In addition, prime minister Justin Trudeau has hinted that even tougher measures could be coming, even once Canada begins easing cross-border travel.

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Also in late March, the Trudeau government announced a halt to all immigration in order to slow the spread of the coronavirus. However, current immigration applications would not be closed or denied due to failure to meet typical requirements.

Still, many pointed out that Canada’s response was actually stronger than the US’, which has continued to import thousands of H-1B workers even while under lockdown due to a global pandemic.

The border between the US and Canada has been closed since the end of March, and this was recently extended, likely into mid-June. Trudeau has stated that the closure and its extension were implemented with full cooperation from the US.

While travel into Canada has not stopped completely, it has fallen drastically since the implementation of restrictive policies. However, critics of the government question whether Trudeau reacted quickly enough, and argue that the policy going forward is too vague and requires more explanation and accountability.

As stated by Conservative MP Pierre Paul-Hus:

“It was the Trudeau government’s failure to close our borders that allowed the virus to spread in the first place. It is incumbent on the Trudeau government to explain how they plan to ensure that travelers who are coming back to Canada are not spreading COVID-19… Unfortunately, right now the Trudeau government is telling Canadians to ‘wait and see’ without explaining what metrics they are relying on to make decisions.”

While Canada is doing significantly better than the US in terms of the number of cases, one tragically sobering area in which it has exhibited clear failure is the fate of its elderly, particularly those in state and private long-term care institutions.

It is estimated that up to 86% of the Canadian death toll is from facilities such as long-term care, retirement, and corrections, with the first two making up the large majority. In one privately-run nursing home, as much as one third of residents have died from coronavirus.

While the situation is complex and there are few countries that do not seem to have significant problems with their approach, it is clear that something is wrong with Canada’s. Perhaps the government should focus more on taking care of its elderly than intrusively monitoring its citizens.

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