European elections: how to prevent a shift to the right?
The groundwork is being laid and candidates are being selected across Europe for the European Parliament elections 2019. Not just since the announcement by US right-wing extremist Steve Bannon that he would support Europe's right-wing populists have fears been mounting that illiberal parties will make major gains. Journalists discuss what can be done to counter this trend.
Stop ignoring inequality
The traditional parties in Europe urgently need to address the subject of inequality, analyst Radu Magdin writes for the Romanian service of German Broadcaster Deutsche Welle:
“European parties like the EPP, SPE and Alde must realise that the social contract and current social model urgently need to be reviewed. The changes must then be translated into concrete political measures. ... The voters are unhappy with the distribution of the profits of globalisation and the dismantling of the safety net that is taking place in the context of internationalisation and free movement of capital. Inequality is not an empty catchphrase but a reality. Those at the political level who continue to ignore it will pay dearly for doing so.”
This election is crucial
Former EU commissioner Danuta Hübner explains in Polityka what's at stake in next year's European elections:
“There could soon be a far larger group of anti-European and right-wing populist MEPs. ... Politicians in Poland tend to view the European elections as a barometer of the political mood in national politics. And they're not taken as seriously by voters as elections to the Sejm, for example. We have to change that way of thinking and start seeing the elections to the European Parliament as decisive for the future of Europe - the Europe in which we want to live.”