On Friday 28th February the European Democratic Party Council unanimously adopted its new ten points manifesto. The name of the candidate for Commission Presidency will be announced on March 12th.
In front of the delegation of the European Democratic Party gathered in Brussels for a council, Francesco Rutelli (EDP co-president) set the tone of what is to be the baseline of the Democrats for the coming elections. "The time for reorganisation has come. In order to defend and revive the European ideal, Europe needs to change", declared the former Mayor of Rome.
EDP Secretary General Marielle de Sarnez asserted: "We represent the European force, willing to embody change. It is up to us to stand up for a more a democratic and efficient Europe for tomorrow". The delegations from Italy, France, Germany, Slovakia, Cyprus, the Basque Country, Poland, Romania, San Marino and the Canary Islands as well as guests from the Czech Republic and Portugal concurred with this determination for change. Marielle de Sarnez insisted, "Europe urgently needs a major pro-European force that goes beyond the national right-left split".
As Mr Rutelli stated "if Europeans are not united, they will be powerless and crushed" by the new global powers, the EDP has been joined by a German delegation led by the Bavarian politician Gabi Schmidt from the Free Voters and a Slovak delegation led by Igor Hrasko. These new members could very well enter the European Parliament in May. A large number of observing parties, particularly from Central and Eastern Europe, wishing to join the EDP for the next European Elections were also attending the Council.
Following the unanimous adoption of the ten points Manifesto, Mr Rutelli insisted: "Reorganisation of the European Union must address two democratic questions: what are the actual aims of the Union and what actual part do citizens have to play in it?" In concrete terms, the European Democratic Party calls for a "political integration in the eurozone"; wishes to restore European production on a large part of the territory; intends to "defend the European social model"; promotes a strategy for "energy self-sufficiency and security"; recalls the necessity to "defend the environment and to fight climate change"; is in favour of a single presidency for both the European Commission and the Council; insists on making the key Council debates public; emphasizes its hope in a "fair and effective fight against the tragedies resulting from illegal immigration"; calls for a "strengthened and reformed CAP" and stresses an even greater "fight against all kinds of discrimination" and "promotion of cultural and linguistic diversity". Marielle de Sarnez summed up the Manifesto’s gist by saying: "It is the lack of democracy that feeds scepticism".
In accordance with the Lisbon treaty, the European political parties are asked to indicate the candidate they support for the presidency of the European Commission. Hence a lively and interesting debate took place on the subject. The official nomination of its candidate will be on March 12th in Strasbourg.