Back in early May, right before Austria’s federal presidential election was held, Conchita Wurst put out a video addressing voters.
A video that, if you know anything about Conchita and could read between the lines, urged Austrians to vote for Alexander Van der Bellen — the man who eventually won.
Until, that is, his sore loser of an opponent, Norbert Hofer, decided to file a legal challenge to the election, and the election results were overturned in a verdict that was eventually known around the world as ‘Gluegate‘.
As much as I liked Conchita Wurst’s ‘White Rose’ video at the time, and thought the message she was talking about was an important one, as an effective video urging people to vote for the most open-minded, most egalitarian candidate, it really wasn’t one.
Simply because, in politics, if you want people to vote for a certain candidate, you have to tell them who you want them to vote for. Not just to hint at it.
Otherwise, chances are, they may think you mean something you don’t, and end up voting for the guy you didn’t want to become president.
Today, however, Conchita has released another political message video about the December 4th re-run of the presidential election in Austria.
And this time she is as upfront and honest as she can possibly be, urging people to vote for the candidate she believes will be the best choice for Austria — if Austrians want the country to remain the open-minded, highly respected, highly successful country it currently is.
That candidate is Alexander Van der Bellen — a social liberal who is a member of Austria’s Green Party, a supporter of the European Union, and someone who believes the only way a country like Austria stays strong is to work with its neighbors to make sure the whole European region remains strong while, at the same time, making sure extremism, bigotry and hatred has no place in an open-minded society.
And someone who believes everyone in Austria should be treated the same and have the same rights and responsibilities, regardless of their gender, ethnicity, sexuality or religion.
Beliefs Van der Bellen’s opponent, Norbert Hofer, with his hate-filled rhetoric, could not be more opposed to.
Conchita started off her video in support of Van der Bellen with the words, “Today I would like to find very clear words, because I want to mobilize people to go to the polls”.
She then explained she was speaking more to those Austrian voters who are still undecided than to anyone else. And that this election was less about the person Austrians vote for, and more about the ideals.
“This election is much, much more. It is setting the course. It is about setting the direction for many years to come. Perhaps even decades. It is about the direction Austria will develop in the future.
One direction leads us to be seen as a cosmopolitan, open-minded country headed by a president who stands for solidarity and openness. And one which believes that the strength of our nation lies in the diversity and the talents of its inhabitants. It leads us into a strong Europe in which Austria fulfills its exemplary function.”
Conchita went on to talk about Van der Bellen’s opponent, Norbert Hofer. A man who has done nothing but stir up hatred, bigotry and divisiveness, just as Trump did in the recent American election.
“The other direction makes Austria the spearhead of Europe’s right-wing populist political class, which is increasingly driving our continent apart. This is precisely the vision of Norbert Hofer. A change of power only possible because many people do not make use of their right to vote.”
And it’s here where Conchita becomes even more passionate about why she thinks Hofer would be a disastrous choice for Austria.
“I do not want Austria to be seen as a vicious, isolated country. That’s something that I fear much more than people seeking refuge in our country. Or people with other views. Or people who pray to another god.”
She finishes up her plea for Austrian voters to vote for the open-minded, forward-thinking candidate that will help lead Austria to even more strength and success (Alexander Van der Bellen), by talking about her own Eurovision Song Contest success.
“I owe my own career to the open-mindedness of the Eurovision audience. My words after winning were “We are unstoppable”.
Dear eligible Austrian voters, please prove during next week’s elections that we are indeed unstoppable, on our way to a better, more open society, which includes and does not exclude others, one that opens boundaries and does not think nationalistically, one that acts globally and does not condemn, offend and discriminate against other humans because of their skin colour, their religion, their gender or their sexual orientation.”
And, if there is still any doubt as to who Conchita Wurst (aka Tom Neuwirth) will be voting for in next week’s Austrian federal presidential election, she puts a stop to any confusion with her final statement.
“I will be voting for Alexander Van der Bellen”.
She ends by asking everyone else to please
“Go vote for Van der Bellen”.
Watch Conchita Wurst throw her support behind Alexander Van der Bellen for Austrian president in the video below.
And then, if you too believe Austria should remain an open-minded, forward-thinking country, and a country that is respected by the rest of the world for its values and morals just as she does, then please vote Alexander Van der Bellen next Sunday too.
Because I’m with her. As I just moved to Austria a few months ago, and I would hate to see it become a lesser country than it is under a president like Hofer,