The AfD’s third-place finish shows that populism in Europe is here to stay – but it can be beaten

After Britain’s shock Brexit vote and the triumph of Donald Trump in the US, pundits predicted that a wind of populist, anxious, resentful, anti politics-as-usual change would sweep across the old continent.

Like a series of dominoes, the governments of the Netherlands and France – and possibly, if rather more implausibly, even Germany – would fall to the Eurosceptic forces of Geert Wilders, Marine Le Pen and Frauke Petry.

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