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Author Topic: Austrian Elections & Politics 4.0 - On to 2018 ... with VP/FP !  (Read 19038 times)
Tender Branson
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« on: October 25, 2017, 10:37:50 am »
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Today, VP/FP's first round of coalition talks took place:



It lasted about 3 hours and the atmosphere was described as "excellent".

In a joint press statement afterwards, Kurz and Strache said that they agreed on future meetings and the creation of subgroups and "issue clusters", which will include various experts on these topics.

The 5 cluster groups are:

* Social Issues (= Pensions, Welfare), Health Care, Fairness
* Economy
* Future (= Education, Infrastructure, Agriculture, Environment)
* Security and Defense
* State and Society (will include administrative reforms and EU issues)

They also agreed to a Kassasturz, which is a major budgetary assessment at the start of a new term and the foundation for their planned projects (revenues/outlays for planned tax cuts etc.) Experts from the Finance Ministry will compile this next week.



http://derstandard.at/2000066675346/Kurz-und-Strache-starten-Koalitionsgespraeche

---

PS: There are also 4 state elections in 2018, all between January and April:

* Salzburg (my home state)
* Tyrol
* Lower Austria
* Carinthia
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mileslunn
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« Reply #1 on: October 25, 2017, 11:29:09 am »
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Today, VP/FP's first round of coalition talks took place:



It lasted about 3 hours and the atmosphere was described as "excellent".

In a joint press statement afterwards, Kurz and Strache said that they agreed on future meetings and the creation of subgroups and "issue clusters", which will include various experts on these topics.

The 5 cluster groups are:

* Social Issues (= Pensions, Welfare), Health Care, Fairness
* Economy
* Future (= Education, Infrastructure, Agriculture, Environment)
* Security and Defense
* State and Society (will include administrative reforms and EU issues)

They also agreed to a Kassasturz, which is a major budgetary assessment at the start of a new term and the foundation for their planned projects (revenues/outlays for planned tax cuts etc.) Experts from the Finance Ministry will compile this next week.



http://derstandard.at/2000066675346/Kurz-und-Strache-starten-Koalitionsgespraeche

---

PS: There are also 4 state elections in 2018, all between January and April:

* Salzburg (my home state)
* Tyrol
* Lower Austria
* Carinthia

Who are the favoured in each state?  Asides from Carinthia, it seems the other three tend to favour OVP and with Kurz likely still in the honeymoon phase doubt the backlash will occur quite that early.  Greens might come in second in Tyrol as they tend to perform fairly well there but not nearly enough to win.  I think the SPO tends to do well in Carinthia, but so does the FPO so not sure what the polls are saying there.
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« Reply #2 on: October 25, 2017, 11:32:07 am »
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will Pilz run lists at a state level?
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Tender Branson
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« Reply #3 on: October 25, 2017, 12:05:56 pm »
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PS: There are also 4 state elections in 2018, all between January and April:

* Salzburg (my home state)
* Tyrol
* Lower Austria
* Carinthia

Who are the favoured in each state?  Asides from Carinthia, it seems the other three tend to favour OVP and with Kurz likely still in the honeymoon phase doubt the backlash will occur quite that early.  Greens might come in second in Tyrol as they tend to perform fairly well there but not nearly enough to win.  I think the SPO tends to do well in Carinthia, but so does the FPO so not sure what the polls are saying there.

Salzburg: Easy VP-win. The VP-Green coalition has reformed the state's finances over the past term and lowered the debt significantly. The Greens will lose a lot though, because they got 20% last time and that is unsustainable. The FP will gain a lot. The SP will remain weak. The state could get VP-FP or VP-SP.

Tyrol: Easy VP-win too. I do not expect VP-Greens to get another majority and I think the VP will have to look for another coalition partner (FP or SP). Maybe VP-Greens-NEOS is possible too (a so-called "Dirndl"-coalition).

Lower Austria: Easy VP-win, but they will lose a lot because the long-term Governor Prll stepped down. SP and especially the FP will gain a lot. VP-SP looks most likely (currently, the VP has an absolute majority there, but the VP still formed a coalition with the SP).

Carinthia: Top pickup opportunity for the FP, which came in first in the federal election. But state elections are a bit different and I expect a close race with the SP. SP-VP and FP-VP are the most likely coalitions. Currently, it is SP-VP-Greens.

Will Pilz run lists at a state level?

They are currently debating this internally. Will be really hard to organize in such a short time ...
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« Reply #4 on: October 25, 2017, 03:32:25 pm »
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While it will be too early in the mandate for any backlash, does Austria have a tendency for states to vote opposites of federal as often after 3 to 4 years you see this in many countries.  US and Canada right now have lower levels of governments of similar political stripes, but it was that way when both Harper and Obama came to power while by the time they left most lower levels were of the other political stripe and polls suggest in the next round of elections the Tories should do better in Canada provincially and Democrats in the US.  Australia is similar as in 2013 when the Liberals/National came to power you had mostly Liberals/National at the state level whereas now most states have Labor governments.  You also in 2007 had all Labor governments at state level, but by 2013 most swung back to Liberals/National.  Germany sort of has this and you do in Italian and French regional elections often see the party in opposition win more than lose and the same with local elections in the UK, so does Austria have this where people go opposites to balance things out or do they usually go the same way as they do federally or is there no correlation?
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« Reply #5 on: October 25, 2017, 04:00:09 pm »
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  So I read elsewhere that NEOS is in favor of a national initiative process (by which I mean that if an issue gets enough signatures there is a mandatory referendum held on that issue).  This means that there is a two thirds majority to put this into law. Hope they get this done.
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Tender Branson
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« Reply #6 on: October 26, 2017, 01:49:11 am »
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While it will be too early in the mandate for any backlash, does Austria have a tendency for states to vote opposites of federal as often after 3 to 4 years you see this in many countries.  US and Canada right now have lower levels of governments of similar political stripes, but it was that way when both Harper and Obama came to power while by the time they left most lower levels were of the other political stripe and polls suggest in the next round of elections the Tories should do better in Canada provincially and Democrats in the US.  Australia is similar as in 2013 when the Liberals/National came to power you had mostly Liberals/National at the state level whereas now most states have Labor governments.  You also in 2007 had all Labor governments at state level, but by 2013 most swung back to Liberals/National.  Germany sort of has this and you do in Italian and French regional elections often see the party in opposition win more than lose and the same with local elections in the UK, so does Austria have this where people go opposites to balance things out or do they usually go the same way as they do federally or is there no correlation?

Yeah, the state elections early next year are way too early to show an impact of the VP-FP coalition. It's possible that they are only sworn in after New Year and the first elections are already a few weeks later.

And yes, there is also a tendency to "punish" the parties in power at the federal level when it comes to state elections. During SPVP coalitions, it was the FP and the Greens that gained - while SP and VP lost support. During the VP/FP-(BZ) coalition between 2000-2006, the SP did well in state elections such as Salzburg in 2004 when they got more than 45% of the vote.

So I read elsewhere that NEOS is in favor of a national initiative process (by which I mean that if an issue gets enough signatures there is a mandatory referendum held on that issue).  This means that there is a two thirds majority to put this into law. Hope they get this done.

It's possible that VP/FP will find a compromise on this topic and that NEOS could vote with them. But I guess this will be later in their term. First, they will focus on more important issues such as introducing a tax cut for workers and consolidating the healthcare carriers into one agency (which is strange, because Austria's health care system already is very efficient and is running a surplus and people are generally very happy with it). VP/FP will also cut deep into the flesh of foreigner's welfare benefits, almost reducing them to zero and reform the citizenship law to make it harder for asylum seekers to apply for our citizenship. Currently, an asylum seeker can already apply for citizenship after 6 years in the country (which is totally idiotic), but VP and FP thankfully want to raise that to 10 years with only legal entry into the country, no crimes committed and if the applicant is in employment.
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Tender Branson
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« Reply #7 on: October 26, 2017, 03:35:30 am »
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New "Matzka/Triple M" poll for NEWS magazine (conducted after the election) and which had the best pre-election poll together with OGM (Christina Matzka's poll from early October was within 1% of each party's election result):



---

"Are you happy with the election results ?"

53-42 Yes

"Now that you know the results, would you vote differently ?"

94-6 No

"Now that you know the results, how would you vote ?"

30% VP
27% SP
26% FP
  6% NEOS
  5% Pilz
  5% Greens
  1% GILT

"Which coalition do you want ?"

45% VP/FP
20% VP/SP
13% SP/FP
  2% VP minority government

"Should the frontrunner of the winning party definitely become Chancellor ?"

66% Yes
16% No

"Direct vote for Chancellor (re-vote):"

32% Kurz
30% Kern
16% Strache

"How do you see your personal future ?"

37% Optimistic
43% Neither/Like now
20% Pessimistic

"What was the basic motive for you to vote for your party ?"

53% Issues/projects/plans of that party
24% the frontrunner of that party
  8% to prevent a good result for another party
  6% out of protest for the whole system
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Tender Branson
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« Reply #8 on: October 26, 2017, 10:20:13 am »
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A map I made:



Colour keys:

Right: 50-80% in six colour-intensified 5% intervals
Left: 50-65% in three colour-intensified 5% intervals

... except for Linz and Steyr cities in Upper Austria (almost white), in which the "Right" won a plurality, with less than 50% each (49.7 etc.)
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Tender Branson
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« Reply #9 on: October 26, 2017, 10:31:41 am »
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There were actually no districts with 80% or more for the "Right", even though some districts were flirting with it (78-79.5%).

Just like there were no 70%+ Norbert Hofer districts last year.

And there was only one district in Vienna which had 60%+ for the "Left".

So, our elections are not as lopsided like in the US, where you can find counties that voted 80-90% for Trump or 70-80% for Hillary ...
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mileslunn
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« Reply #10 on: October 26, 2017, 11:20:41 am »
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There were actually no districts with 80% or more for the "Right", even though some districts were flirting with it (78-79.5%).

Just like there were no 70%+ Norbert Hofer districts last year.

And there was only one district in Vienna which had 60%+ for the "Left".

So, our elections are not as lopsided like in the US, where you can find counties that voted 80-90% for Trump or 70-80% for Hillary ...

Still it seems Austria as a whole is fairly lopsided towards the right as opposed to split down the middle.  Sort of the opposite of us in Canada where we tilt fairly to the left although kind of like Alberta which tilts heavily to the right.  When it comes to 80-90% for right wing, it seems only in Canada and the US do you find those numbers (In Canada it is in Rural Alberta the right gets that kind of support), while when it comes to over 80% left you get that in not just Canada and the US, but also the UK (interestingly enough in the UK, the Tories didn't get over 70% in any constituency but Labour got over 80% in some). 

I do get the impression Austria has always been somewhat less cosmopolitan than others so running a campaign on less immigration would probably be more popular and less of a backlash.  Also on economics, I don't think you have as big a gap between the rich and poor as the English speaking countries thus the difficulty with social democratic parties and also why even when they win, they rarely run up the margins.
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Tender Branson
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« Reply #11 on: October 27, 2017, 12:52:09 pm »
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The new parliament will become more female and younger when it convenes on November 9 (the final composition is not known yet and won't be until December/January when the new government takes office: government members are not MPs, so VP/FP can replace them with the next on their lists).

The youngest newly-elected MP will be 22 year old Claudia Plakolm from the VP:



Others include Johanna Jachs, VP (26):



Eva-Maria Holzleitner, SP (24):



Marlene Svazek, FP (25):



Stephanie Cox, List PILZ (28):



Alma Zadic, List PILZ (33):



Claudia Gamon, NEOS (28):



... and a lot of young male MPs.
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mileslunn
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« Reply #12 on: October 27, 2017, 01:44:28 pm »
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The new parliament will become more female and younger when it convenes on November 9 (the final composition is not known yet and won't be until December/January when the new government takes office: government members are not MPs, so VP/FP can replace them with the next on their lists).

The youngest newly-elected MP will be 22 year old Claudia Plakolm from the VP:



Others include Johanna Jachs, VP (26):



Eva-Maria Holzleitner, SP (24):



Marlene Svazek, FP (25):



Stephanie Cox, List PILZ (28):



Alma Zadic, List PILZ (33):



Claudia Gamon, NEOS (28):



... and a lot of young male MPs.

Good to see also a diversity in parties too.  I noticed in Britain it seems the overwhelming majority of young females are Labour MPs, only a few in the Tory ranks, and a couple in the Liberal Democrats and Scottish National Party.
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Tender Branson
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« Reply #13 on: October 27, 2017, 02:17:55 pm »
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There were actually no districts with 80% or more for the "Right", even though some districts were flirting with it (78-79.5%).

Just like there were no 70%+ Norbert Hofer districts last year.

And there was only one district in Vienna which had 60%+ for the "Left".

So, our elections are not as lopsided like in the US, where you can find counties that voted 80-90% for Trump or 70-80% for Hillary ...

Still it seems Austria as a whole is fairly lopsided towards the right as opposed to split down the middle.  Sort of the opposite of us in Canada where we tilt fairly to the left although kind of like Alberta which tilts heavily to the right.  When it comes to 80-90% for right wing, it seems only in Canada and the US do you find those numbers (In Canada it is in Rural Alberta the right gets that kind of support), while when it comes to over 80% left you get that in not just Canada and the US, but also the UK (interestingly enough in the UK, the Tories didn't get over 70% in any constituency but Labour got over 80% in some). 

I do get the impression Austria has always been somewhat less cosmopolitan than others so running a campaign on less immigration would probably be more popular and less of a backlash. Also on economics, I don't think you have as big a gap between the rich and poor as the English speaking countries thus the difficulty with social democratic parties and also why even when they win, they rarely run up the margins.

A) That is definitely true. Since the early 1980s, Austria always had a right-wing majority in parliament. The time before (Chancellor Kreisky, SP) cannot be compared really, because Kreisky was still able to keep the blue-collar folks in his camp and constantly got 50% in federal elections. Today, the FP is basically the 2nd "Labour Party" in the country.

B) That is also true: Austria is a largely rural country. Only 35% of the population lives in cities with more than 15.000 people.
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Tender Branson
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« Reply #14 on: October 28, 2017, 07:37:01 am »
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VP/FP coalition talks will resume on Monday with a baseline budgetary assessment of non-partisan experts from the Finance Ministry and intensified VP/FP talks on Wednesday.

As I have posted on top, VP/FP agreed on 5 major cluster groups which have been broken down into 25 sub-groups.

Today, VP/FP named their cluster negotiating teams and additional experts that were appointed by them to give their opinions on several topics. The VP named 9 additional, sometimes non-partisan experts, the FP 5.

The cluster-speakers (who will report to and interact with the chief negotiation team) are:

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« Reply #15 on: October 28, 2017, 10:24:02 am »
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... and a lot of young male MPs.

But no post with pictures of them?! Now Tender I have all respect for the fact that you prefer looking at young female politicians but do you not consider your fans who prefer to look at young male politicians? 
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« Reply #16 on: October 28, 2017, 10:36:09 am »
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... and a lot of young male MPs.

But no post with pictures of them?! Now Tender I have all respect for the fact that you prefer looking at young female politicians but do you not consider your fans who prefer to look at young male politicians? 
If they all look like Kurz, he can spare us these pics...
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Tender Branson
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« Reply #17 on: October 28, 2017, 10:51:37 am »
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... and a lot of young male MPs.

But no post with pictures of them?! Now Tender I have all respect for the fact that you prefer looking at young female politicians but do you not consider your fans who prefer to look at young male politicians? 

I apply some affirmative action in favour of women here, who are still underrepresented in parliament relative to their 52% share in the population.

Besides, I frequently post pictures of Sebastian Kurz - that has to be enough ... Wink

But well, because you asked ... other new male under-35 MPs include:

Stefan Schnll (VP)



Mario Lindner (SP)



Maximilian Krauss (FP)



Douglas Hoyos (NEOS)



Sebastian Bohrn Mena (List Pilz)

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Tender Branson
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« Reply #18 on: October 29, 2017, 01:50:38 am »
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Side-fact about the Full-Face Veil Ban that is enforced here since October 1:

Halloween has been added by the Interior Ministry as a "cultural event", like Carnival or Krampus/Santa Claus costumes in February and December -  even though Halloween is only celebrated by some Austrians.

Which means it is possible to dress as a woman with Burqa during Halloween ...
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« Reply #19 on: October 29, 2017, 07:25:35 am »
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Dear god, I hate Kurz and I hate Strache

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« Reply #20 on: October 29, 2017, 07:28:05 am »
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Halloween should be illegal in the EU. It is as much as an offense to European culture and traditions as people wearing burqas.
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Tender Branson
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« Reply #21 on: October 29, 2017, 07:54:07 am »
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Dear god, I hate Kurz and I hate Strache.

Please explain why ...
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Tender Branson
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« Reply #22 on: October 30, 2017, 02:42:46 pm »
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VP/FP continued their coalition talks today with a budgetary assessment, compiled from experts of the Finance Ministry.



Their updated budget numbers until September show that Austria's Maastricht-relevant budget deficit will come in at 0.9% of GDP this year, compared with 1.6% last year.

Debt will go down to 78.5% of GDP this year, down from 83.5% last year. Debt is actually projected to go down to 64% of GDP until the term is over in 2022 (but only assuming good economic growth and low interest rates over the next 5 years of course).

Even though the budget deficit next year (the first with a VP-FP budget) is projected to be lower (at 0.5% of GDP), VP-FP still have to find ways to slim down spending or increase revenues by a combined 2 Bio. to achieve a balanced budget (which both parties want).

That seems tough, but if every Ministry is instructed to cut something it could be done (something similar has been done in Upper Austria a few days ago, when VP-FP presented their balanced state budget for 2018).

Once again, the climate in the talks today was described as "excellent", the negotiation team has been expanded to 150 people (2 from each party for each of the 25 issue subgroups and 1 expert for each party). The groups will start their work tomorrow.

Today's joint press statement was delivered by VP general secretary Elisabeth Kstinger and FP's vice-chair Norbert Hofer:



It is likely that Norbert Hofer will become the new Foreign Minister and Elisabeth Kstinger the new Minister for a Liveable Austria (= Agriculture, Environment, Forests and Water).
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« Reply #23 on: October 30, 2017, 03:03:50 pm »
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What's the new governments stance on climate change? Are the FPO denialists?

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DavidB.
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« Reply #24 on: October 30, 2017, 03:22:34 pm »
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Are the FPO denialists?
They are one of the greenest radical right-wing parties. The VP is probably worse on the climate and environmental issues, though who knows with Kurz.
« Last Edit: October 30, 2017, 03:25:11 pm by DavidB. »Logged
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