The Ibiza video seemed to have reached a historic low for many Austrians: The later Vice Chancellor of the FPÖ pondered with an alleged oligarch niece about the takeover of the Kronen-Zeitung. The pipe dream: The niece should buy the newspaper, she would get public contracts for it. However, this corruption plot did not take place. Now the whole world is being surprised by a new, even deeper low point in Vienna. The public prosecutor’s office carried out a raid with judicial approval in the Federal Chancellery, the ÖVP party headquarters and the Ministry of Finance. The reason: Federal Chancellor Sebastian Kurz and his clique are said to have pushed money from the Ministry of Finance to the newspaper Austria. The consideration: The newspaper is said to have overthrown Kurzen’s predecessor and wrote up the 35-year-old Strahlemann via very positive opinion polls. Kurz did, if the allegations are correct, exactly what Strache had planned and why the FPÖ man had to resign. Kurz separated from the coalition with the FPÖ because of Ibiza, presented himself as incorruptible and now governs with the Greens. These had advertised in the election campaign that they wanted to stand up for cleanliness in politics. However, this is not an easy task in a political marriage with the ÖVP: The Federal Chancellor was recently charged with false testimony in a committee.
The incumbent finance minister is also in the sights of the judiciary. Kurz had come out of nowhere a few years ago and scored points with the voters with his friendly manner and mother-in-law face. He had emerged stronger from all previous crises. But that has changed since the Corona crisis, in which Kurz took a tough course. For months there have been repeated demos against Kurz. The latest scandal does not come as a surprise: In Austria it is common practice for the government to “promote” the media with advertisements. But Kurz, who seems aloof and arrogant today, could stumble upon the latest affair. The newspaper Standard asked if a Federal Chancellor could rule from prison. Even in Austria, nobody can currently imagine that.