Luxembourg’s Foreign Minister on the Outcome of European Elections
A success for pro-European partiesJune 05th, 2019
Jean Asselborn, Luxembourg Foreign Minister, in conversation with Ann-Kathrin Büüsker of Deutschlandfunk, expressed his views on the outcome of the latest European Election. He sees the outcome of the European elections as a success for pro-Europeans. They are strong enough to prevail against the populist parties. The election was an incentive to further the European peace project.
Jean Asselborn, Minister for Foreign and European Affairs of Luxembourg, Deputy Prime Minister and member of the Luxembourg Workers' Party, that is Social Democrat. He said, that the European elections - maybe it's the first time - leaves no one cold. As we have seen, 13 percent more people vote in Germany, and 10 percent in Europe. Asselborn believes that many of them supported their political families, of course, but they also had the idea of putting the Salvinis, Le Pens, the AfD in their place. The aim of these parties and politicians was to become the strongest faction in the European Parliament. That's wrong, they're only third. The EPP and Social Democracy are first and second. If the two were not, they would be the first, because the Greens and the Liberals are behind these tatters.
Asselborn continued that there are 751 MEPs in the European Parliament. If that works well for them, they have 110 seats, extremists, nationalists. Le Pen lost, got fewer votes than five years ago. The punch for them, of course, is the Lega in Italy - but the Lega in Italy ended up getting less than 30 percent. The AfD had expected a completely different result. Well, it is important that we take note of the fact that we are dealing, especially in the European Parliament, with these people, with these politicians, but he believes that this is not a disaster.
In his words, the European Parliament has a democratic structure. Just as you are struggling with these people from the AfD in the Bundestag, he believes the reasoning and strength of the pro-European parties is big enough to become masters here. We must not make the mistake people are saying now, some are pro-Europeans and the others are bad Europeans. Among the pro-Europeans - we must not put the extremists on the line - there has to be competition, a democratic debate, to find the best way to move Europe forward.