Austrian conservative leader Sebastian Kurz and his People's Party won the Austrian election with 37.2% of the vote, while the far-right Freedom Party (FPOe) took a beating following a corruption scandal, a first projection showed on Sunday.
The People's Party (OeVP) gained 5.7 percentage points compared to the previous parliamentary vote in 2017, according to the projection that is based on 46% of counted ballots.
Kurz had canceled his coalition with the far right and called the snap election in May, after a video surfaced that showed senior FPOe politicians mulling infrastructure and media deals with a woman posing as a wealthy Russian donor.
The FPOe was projected to drop 10 points to 16% on Sunday.
The Social Democrats did not profit from the scandal and are seen at 22%, the worst result in their history.
The Greens, projected at 14.3%, and the liberal Neos, at 7.4%, both gained support.
Some 6.4 million voters aged 16 and up were eligible to cast ballots for Sunday's election.
The Alpine country of 8.8 million has been run by a non-partisan interim administration appointed in June, after the publication of a video showing Freedom Party leader Heinz-Christian Strache appearing to offer favors to a purported Russian investor triggered the Kurz government's collapse.
Experts have predicted "whizz-kid" Kurz could once again partner up with the Freedom Party in a re-run of the coalition that has been touted by Hungarian Prime Minister Viktor Orban and other nationalists as a model for all of Europe.
But fresh allegations of wrong-doing have shaken the far-right over the past week.
Prosecutors confirmed Thursday they were investigating Heinz-Christian Strache, who resigned as FPOe leader and vice-chancellor in May because of "Ibiza-gate," over fraudulent party expense claims.
Kurz, whose right-wing People's Party was leading recent opinion polls, will likely have to choose whether to form a fresh coalition with a chastened Freedom Party or team up with the center-left Social Democrats.
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