Kurz favored to return as chancellor in Austria election

Kurz favored to return as chancellor in Austria election
Karl Nehammer Secretary General of Austrian People's Party, OEVP, presents a poster of the conservative Austrian People's Party, OEVP, with former Austrian chancellor Sebastian Kurz for the upcoming Austrian national elections in Vienna, Austria, Tuesday, Sept. 24, 2019. The Austrian elections will held on Sunday, Sept. 29, 2019. The poster's main slogan reads: 'His opponents say Kurz has to go - But you decide'. (AP Photo/Ronald Zak)

VIENNA (AP) — Austrians vote Sunday in an election meant to restore political normality after a scandal that brought down conservative ex-Chancellor Sebastian Kurz’s center-right coalition in May.

The 33-year-old Kurz is strongly favored to return to power.

The country of 8.8 million people in the heart of Europe has been run by a non-partisan interim administration under Chancellor Brigitte Bierlein, a former head of its top court, since the drama in spring that led to Kurz pulling the plug on his coalition with the far-right Freedom Party and then being ousted in a parliamentary confidence vote.

The election offers a test of the far-right party’s recovery from the scandal that brought down its longtime leader.

Polls show a big lead for Kurz’s center-right People’s Party.