European elections - This time I am voting
The article is signed by the current European Parliament President, Antonio Tajani, and the following former Presidents, Lord Plumb (1987 – 1989), Enrique Barón Crespo (1989 – 1992), Klaus Hänsch (1994 – 1997), José Maria Gil-Robles (1997 – 1999) , Pat Cox (2002 – 2004), Josep Borrell Fontelles (2004 – 2007), Hans-Gert Pöttering (2007 – 2009) and Jerzy Buzek (2009 – 2012).
There is little doubt that we are at a crossroads and the choices citizens make when called to vote at the end of the month of May will have a central bearing on the future of Europe.
We have been Presidents of the European Parliament during times of both uncertainty and optimism. Throughout the continent’s post-World War II history, solidarity has united Europeans and allowed them to face down their greatest difficulties, even when the clouds of doubt have been darkest. We no longer speak of “old” and “new” member states, we speak of one Europe, from Helsinki to Nicosia and from Lisbon to Bucharest and Warsaw.
Old certainties that have served Europe and the wider world well since the end of the Second World War are now strained by a new wave of transactional politics and rising geopolitical tensions in a new era of great power competition.
As Europeans we cannot choose for others. We cannot control what others do. We can choose for ourselves, making collective choices in our own interest consistent with our needs and values and the needs of the wider world around us.
The European Union is less perfect than many might wish for and less imperfect than the caricature presented by its most strident critics. For it to be perfected, to adapt and reform first it must be preserved.
Forty years ago in June 1979 the European Parliament was elected for the first time. Forty years earlier in 1939 a generation of young Europeans was forced to fight against each other. Finally fifty-five million people were killed in the World War II.
Working together to solve problems and differences has been the cornerstone of European peace and unity since then. It was a lesson expensively learned and one not to be forgotten or cast aside through apathy or hostility.
Support for the European Union is at a record high in opinion polls. That needs to be transformed now into support at the ballot box. We have the largest single market in the world. Our values and traditions – the dignity of each human being, freedom, democracy, legal order and peace – underpin our way of life.
Europe more than ever needs her Europeans which is why we, the undersigned President of the European Parliament and former Presidents of the European Parliament, are appealing to the peoples of Europe to exercise their civic right and responsibility to vote in the forthcoming European Parliament elections.
This article was published in the following medias:
|Name of media
|Europa braucht jetzt seine Bürger
|La Libre Belgique
|24 Chasa (print and online)
|Европейски избори – този път гласувам
|Postimees (print and online)
|Euroopa Parlamendi presidendid: minge valima!
|Turun Sanomat (print and online)
|EU:n suosion tulisi näkyä myös vaaliuurnilla
|Antonio Tajani : « Avant de pouvoir être perfectionnée et réformée, l’Union européenne doit être préservée »
|Nederlands Dagblad (print and online)
Dziennik Gazeta Prawna
|Eleições Europeias – Desta vez eu voto
|Antonio Tajani și foști președinți ai Parlamentului European: Alegerile europene – De data asta votez!
|V prieskumoch má EÚ rekordnú podporu
|Elecciones europeas: esta vez voto
|”Ta ert ansvar och rösta i EU-valet”