Are Populists Unusually Prone to Political Blunders?

In the DNA of Far-Right Demagogues Is a Blueprint for Their Demise

Henry Nicholls / Reuters

After a swift and seemingly inevitable rise, some of Europe’s far-right populists have begun to falter, one after another. They are foundering not because voters have rejected their ideas but because of the embarrassing missteps that follow from a particular brand of politics, which can be characterized by nebulous insularity and delusional overconfidence. In Austria, Vice Chancellor Heinz-Christian Strache was caught on tape promising state contracts in exchange for campaign donations to a woman whom he believed to be a Russian oligarch’s niece. Strache and his far-right Freedom Party crashed out of government in May as a result, and …