Dark horse of the far right: Could Lowell pip Greens and Democrats?

Norman Lowell has registered the support of 1.2% of respondents in MaltaToday's latest survey, 0.2% less than incumbent Francis Zammit Dimech, and 0.1% more than MP David Stellini

Lowell's Imperium Europa registered in MaltaToday's poll for the first time in this campaign
Lowell's Imperium Europa registered in MaltaToday's poll for the first time in this campaign

Norman Lowell's Imperium Europa has, for the first time in this election campaign, registered in MaltaToday's poll, which asked respondents which political party they would vote for if an election were to be held tomorrow.

While never winning enough votes to get elected, Lowell, who has been a permanent fixture in all European elections held in Malta since 2004, has increased his vote tally each time. 

In the last election held five years ago, the far-right politician polled 6,761 votes or 2.7%. He had 657 votes less than Alternattiva Demokratika.

And polls are now suggesting that on 25 May, Lowell may even end up ahead of the Greens and the Democratic Party.

In the latest MaltaToday survey, Lowell polled 1.2%, a result better than that for the Democratic Party (0.8%) and Alternattiva Demokratika (1%).

It is the first time that Lowell and his Imperium Europa party have featured in the polls held so far.

Lowell announced his European election candidature very late in the day for the April MaltaToday survey to be able to capture any result in his regard.

But one month later, Lowell has not only featured but forged ahead of the two minor parties.

Despite having two MPs, PD has failed to leave any appreciable impact on the electorate. Its best result was in March last year when the MaltaToday survey recorded PD at 2.1%.

In all other surveys bar one, the PD has failed to reach the 1% mark.

AD’s fortunes are no different. Its highest result goes back to November 2017 when the party polled 3.1% in a MaltaToday survey. After that, the party’s results hovered below 1% with only a few exceptions.

Lowell’s primary support is in the Northern region, which includes the locality of St Paul’s Bay, where his anti-immigrant rhetoric may find some fertile ground.

In this region, Lowell registers 4.7% support, followed by Gozo with 3.6%.

The Maltese Patriots Movement with its anti-immigrant policy has consistently failed to register in the polls despite appealing to the same voter base as Lowell’s.

It remains to be seen whether Lowell will manage to retain this support in the remaining three weeks to the election.

He will not be a threat to the two major parties but can seriously embarrass the two established minor parties if he manages to get ahead of them.