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Home News A spontaneous, organised and well-financed campaign

A spontaneous, organised and well-financed campaign

Published on 08/03/2016

A week after the crushing defeat of the Swiss People’s Party initiative that would have forced judges to automatically expel foreigners committed of serious crimes, the result is being interpreted as a sign of the vitality of Swiss democracy. Unexpected and spontaneous, the ‘No’ campaign was both well organised and financed. The result was a massive 63% voter turnout – something that has rarely been seen in modern Swiss political history – 58.9% of whom voted against the initiative. “This kind of dynamic campaign is not a completely new phenomenon,” said direct democracy expert and editor-in-chief of the website people2power, Bruno Kauffman. “In 1989, the initiative ‘For a Switzerland without an army’ saw a multitude of networks spontaneously organise against the initiative, which was viewed as practically treasonous. The result – 35.6% yes – surprised everyone.” In 2016, the role played by social media for the ‘No’ campaign had a major impact. In the month prior to ...