When probing why the PES failed to nominate a candidate in Madrid, to go along with its pan-European manifesto, the blame lies squarely at your feet, Messrs Prime Ministers. You, the two socialist leaders of Spain and Portugal, already assured Mr. Barroso late last year of your support for him to serve a second term as EC president, despite the fact that he is a leader of the European People’s Party (centre-right).This letter comes very late, but it asks something that would be natural in a national polity:
As PES activists, we are well placed to know that the elections will be at best an uphill battle. If the election were held today, the EPP would win by a landslide.
For the PES to win the election, a significant new factor needs to come in play. Having a candidate would make a substancial difference! Putting a face and a name on the Manifesto’s action would help enormously in imparting the PES’s message that a new direction is needed for Europe. Additionally, Mr. Barroso is strongly disliked by large parts of the electorate for his general lack of leadership, but is practically guaranteed under the status quo to keep his post; merely giving the choice to voters to elect someone else at the EC presidency would be a giant step for European democracy, as well as a strategic move for the PES.
Political leaders from the same party should not support the candidate of the opponent. When regionalistic or nationalistic politics won't dominate over the politics of ideas, of principles, of values anymore, there might be room for a European democracy, but as long there is no choice, we'll just remain in the antechamber of a democratic polity.
I hope the open letter will be seen and heard in Madrid and Lisbon. For the sake of democracy.
Under the category "European parliament elections 2009" I am following up national and European activities on the path to the European Parliament elections 2009.
For an overview over all articles in this category have a look at the overview article.
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