Stevens welcomes 'true contest' for European Parliament President

Date

30 Nov 2016

Sections

Global Europe

Press release

Candidate for the Presidency of the European Parliament, Helga Stevens MEP, has welcomed the decision of Gianni Pittella and 'potentially' of Guy Verhofstadt to enter the race.

The ECR candidate for January's election to replace Martin Schulz said:

"For around a decade, the next President of the European Parliament has been decided in a back room by a few men. I welcome the fact that this now looks more like an open contest where MEPs get to decide on who can best bring the parliament together and move forward at a time when trust and confidence need to be rebuilt.

"Unfortunately, both Mr Pittella and Mr Verhofstadt represent the same culture of back-room dealing that has demeaned this parliament over the past few years. Fresh blood is needed in the President's chair, not someone who has sought to pre-cook every major decision out of public scrutiny, but someone who believes that in the European Parliament every voice matters.

"I am still the only candidate wanting to involve every one of the parliament's 751 MEPs in how the EU develops in the coming years. These decisions need to be made by all MEPs, representing the vast diversity of Europe and its 500 million citizens, not by a few men from a couple of states.

"I want the EU to succeed by offering real solutions to major challenges that our voters face, but it cannot do that if we elect another member of the back-room stitch-up society as our next President."

ENDS

Notes: Mrs Stevens has written more extensively on her candidacy today on EU Observer. Read more here: https://euobserver.com/stakeholders/136082

Contact: ECR Press Office, James Holtum on +32 473 861762; james.holtum@europarl.europa.eu or Yannick Vanderveeren on +32 473 806446

The ECR was created to take the EU in a new direction, according to the principles of our founding Prague Declaration.

For more information on the ECR, watch our promotional video at http://youtu.be/F5syQt1JuQI or visit our website: www.ecrgroup.eu

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