Antwerp: newcomers vote to the left

An opinion poll conducted by the Antwerp daily Gazet van Antwerpen shows that immigrants in the city intend to vote en masse for left wing parrties in the forthcoming local elections. The survey showed the Flemish nationalist N-VA as the biggest party with 31% of voting intentions among the population as a whole, while newcomers in the city are far more likely to vote for left wing parties like the socialists and the greens.

A full 65% of the immigrant vote will back left-wing parties. Mayor Patrick Janssens' socialist SP.A gets most support. 36.6% of newcomers intend to vote for this party compared to 26.1% in the general poll. The greens pick up 21.9% of the immigrant vote compared to 9.4% among voters as a whole.

The far-right anti-immigrant Vlaamse Belang polls 12% of the immigrant vote compared to 19.4% among the population as a whole.

Newcomers also differ in their choice for mayor. In the survey of the population as a whole Partick Janssens and the Flemish nationalists' Bart De Wever were neck-to-neck. Among the ethnic vote Mr Janssens picks up 46% compared to only 17.5% for Mr De Wever.