9 May 2021
The Conservative and Reformist Group in the European Parliament envisages a Europe that takes into account the needs of member states.
After the inaugural event of the Conference of the Future of Europe which took place in Strasbourg today, ECR Co-Chairman Raffaele Fitto said:
“We Conservatives in the European Parliament see a middle way between the extremes of more Europe and no Europe. The obsession with centralising Europe and imposing more and more bureaucratic constraints will inevitably result in weakening our economies and undermining our democracies.
“By putting Europe’s national democracies back in the driving seat, we can build a Europe that will offer a platform for cooperation that will help promote European prosperity and security for generations to come.
“We believe that the European Union has become too centralised, too big, and too out of touch with ordinary citizens. In short, we believe the peoples of Europe want the European Union to do less and to do it better.
“We believe that one of the best ways of improving the lives of EU citizens on a day-to-day basis is to promote the creation of jobs and economic recovery. The EU should focus on reducing barriers within the Single Market, ensuring that consumer rights are upheld across all Member States, championing small and medium size businesses, and improving basic infrastructure — from the digital market to transport networks.”
Co-Chairman Legutko added:
“From the late 1950s to the 1990s, the political architecture of Europe was balanced. The European institutions had clear but limited powers that were subject to the direction of sovereign European democracies. As a result, the old European Community brought a great deal of value to European citizens.
“The drive for an ‘ever closer union’ is no longer an expression of hope for European citizens to work together; it has become a dogma used to justify a centralised federal Europe, with less and less regard for the rights of its national democracies.
“We propose a positive, middle way between ‘more Europe’ and ‘no Europe’. Europe is a place where nations should nurture and protect their cultures and traditions; where freedom, sovereignty, and independence should be defended; and where individuals, families and communities should thrive.
“We need to reassert that nation-states are the primary bearers of feelings of collective identity and solidarity. Our national democracies are the primary political entities in Europe and are the source of the Union’s democratic legitimacy. They are not the subjects of the European Union; they are its owners.”
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