Austrian President Alexander van der Bellen addresses the media during a press conference at the Hofburg palace in Vienna, Austria, Saturday, May 18, 2019. Austrian Chancellor Sebastian Kurz has called for an early election after the resignation of his vice chancellor spelled an end to his governing coalition. (AP Photo/Michael Gruber)

Austrian president eyes September as best time for new vote

May 19, 2019 - 4:40 am

FRANKFURT, Germany (AP) — Austria's president says the first few days of September would be the best time to hold an early election after a covert video scandal shook up the country's politics.

President Alexander Van der Bellen spoke Sunday after meeting with Austrian Chancellor Sebastian Kurz.

Kurz called for a new election after the resignation Saturday of his vice chancellor, Heinz-Christian Strache, who apologized for his actions in a video where he was apparently offering government contracts to a purported Russian investor at a boozy gathering in Ibiza.

Kurz decided not to continue the governing coalition between his center-right People's Party and Strache's anti-migrant Freedom Party. The video was published by two German media outlets.

Van der Bellen said "everything must be done to restore trust in officeholders, in the representatives of the people."