The Associated Press describes what has happened:
BRUSSELS (AP) — The European Union’s traditional center splintered in the hardest-fought European Parliament elections in decades, with the far right and pro-environment Greens gaining ground on Sunday after four days of a polarized vote.
Turnout was at a two-decade high over the balloting across the 28 European Union countries. The elections were seen as a test of the influence of the nationalist, populist and hard-right movements that have swept the continent in recent years and impelled Britain to quit the EU altogether. Both supporters of closer European unity and those who consider the EU a meddlesome and bureaucratic presence portrayed the vote as crucial for the future of the bloc.
The greenie gains seem to be roughly parallel to the rise of "vanguard" Democrats such as Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez. The stronger trend, though, and still seemingly dismissed in the press, is that multiple countries, most strongly Britain, have chosen to go with Trumpian nationalist parties, taking aim at the supranational governing body that is supposedly all in for what's euphemistically known as "European integration" which actually means: Rule by unelected European Union bureaucrats over the elected leaders in one's supposed democracy. That's a fine pickle for that self-congratulatory body to find itself in - Europe's voters have top-loaded it with enemies of the entire project.
Why does that happen? Well, because countries are being submerged and ignored when they try to change anything. They're being flooded with illegal migrants, for one, people can neither assimilate nor be happy in the countries they are entering illegally, and these people are rapidly harvesting these countries of their resources and paying them back by committing terrorism against them. They're seeing their economic growth going anemic by the EU's hideous overbearing regulations, and some, such as Greece, are suffering from Europe's Germany-led monetary policy, which cuts them off from their competitive advantage of a weak currency. It was very nice to see Greece's voters throw its hard-left socialist party Syriza out in this bargain.
In short, the European Union was unable and unwilling to respond to what the voters wanted, so now they're getting it good and hard on the parliamentary side, which is the only way voters have left to communicate with them. It rather reminds me of the superconcentrated force coming from Venezuela's national assembly, naming Juan Guaido acting president over the current dictatorship, because that was the only possible place where power could be exerted and as a result, it was extreme.
Same thing in the European parliament. In Britain, the reaction was most extreme, and there was an obvious reason: Brits democratically voted to exit the European Union, and creepy little petty European Union bureaucrats wouldn't let them. They demanded monstrous payments for the privilege of leaving, given that their project is so very dependent on British money anyway, and little of that money goes back to Britain - it goes to subsidize Europe's bureaucrats, failed welfare states, and lousy global warming projects. The Brits were tired of this and that drove them out.
And like the Bourbons of old, they've 'learnt nothing and forgotten nothing,' so this election hit them even harder, and was joined by other angry European states who wanted out.
What we are seeing here is a repeat of the Trump phenomenon, a well-justified revolt against the 'elites' but most specifically, one set of laws for one group of people and another set for the rest. I have always felt that the tipping point of the 2016 election was not in James Comey's investigation of Hillary Clinton, but in his refusal to prosecute her for her mishandling of government secrets, making sure to call it 'extremely careless' instead of 'grossly negligent' which would have merited charges. At the same time, a petty Navy sailor was thrown in jail for a far more minor violation of guarding secrets. One set of laws for them, another set for us.
The same was obvious with Europe. Over there, a democratic referendum carried zero weight to the Eurocrats, who vowed to make any exit as miserable as possible and often mocked British voters. They didn't respect democracy and since they were the ruling establishment, they started to make Brits doubt whether they lived in a democracy.
Hence, the stunning pressure-valve vote.
What it shows now is that since the European Commission cannot be persuaded to govern democratically, it's going to be eaten from within. This is roughly equivalent of President Trump's 'drain the swamp' agenda. The swamp will fight back, but the momentum is inescapable. One can only hope that these new parliamentarians find a credible means of destroying the whole failed project from within.