Norbert Hofer of Austria's Freedom Party, FPOE, applauds at the final election campaign event in Vienna, Austria, Friday, Dec. 2, 2016. Austria holds presidential elections on Sunday. (AP Photo/Ronald Zak)
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Austria's long and ugly presidential campaign drew to a close Saturday, with a confident far-right aiming to emulate Donald Trump and Brexit campaigners by dealing a hammer-blow to Vienna's centrist establishment.A victory on Sunday for Norbert Hofer from the anti-immigration and EU-critical Freedom Party (FPOe) would make him Europe's first far-right elected president since 1945 .The Austrian presidency is largely ceremonial but it would be another triumph for populist politics a month since Donald Trump's US election victory and five months after the British chose to leave the European Union.Hofer won the first round in April, knocking out candidates from the center-right and center-left that have dominated national politics since World War II.This time there are 20 percent fewer postal votes, which might benefit Hofer, experts say.A final TV debate on Thursday saw Hofer call Van der Bellen a liar 24 times, vice versa three times.
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