22/05/2020 GIP

Is Georgian Populism Eurosceptic?


Givi Silagadze
Publish Date:

The proliferation of populist actors in the political systems of European countries in the last two decades has been accompanied by the rise of Euroscepticism. The tandem of populism and Euroscepticism, as some scholars refer to it,[1] has proven to be at odds with liberal-democratic norms and might potentially remold the dynamics of national party competition, especially with respect to the European Union.Given Georgia’s constitutionally entrenched goal to pursue the Euro-Atlantic trajectory, it is important to examine the extent to which populist actors in Georgia harbor Eurosceptic attitudes.

This policy memo aims to demarcate the overlap of populism and Euroscepticism in contemporary Georgia. Based on its findings, it can be argued that Georgian populism is not entirely Eurosceptic. However, right-wing populism and Eurosceptic attitudes seem to be tightly connected. Indeed, the combination of populism and right-wing nationalism is typically accompanied by Euroscepticism.

[1] Kneuer, M. 2017. “The tandem of populism and Euroscepticism: a comparative perspective in the light of the European crises”. Contemporary Social Science. 14(1): 26-42

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