People across Austria began to head to the polls on Sunday in order to participate in the snap general election. The conservative People’s Party is expected to win the most votes, making its leader, 31-year-old Sebastian Kurz, the country’s next chancellor.


Kurz Photo Credit: Reuters/Channel 2 News

The polling stations across Austria opened Sunday for the general election. Former foreign minister and head of the conservative People’s Party (ÖVP) 31-year-old Sebastian Kurz is expected to be chosen as Austria’s next chancellor, becoming the youngest head of state in the EU and the world.

ÖVP, which was branded during the campaign as Kurz’s personal “movement,” is expected to win about 30 percent of the votes, making it the largest party in the country. Kurz, who has promised to implement a tougher immigration policy and cut taxes, changed the party’s list, making it gender-balanced and more appealing to young people.

Kurz became the leader of the party in May. At the age of 27, he became Austria’s foreign minister and was praised for reducing the number of migrants who entered the country from the Balkans.

Despite the predicted win, Kurz will still need to establish a coalition, which would likely include the far right-wing Freedom Party of Austria (FPOe), led by Heinz-Christian Strache. According to some of the polls, FPOe is expected to gain many votes in the election, becoming either the second or third largest party.