No elec­tion al­liances for New Democ­racy

Meimarakis will fo­cus on sup­port of those who voted ‘yes’ in ref­er­en­dum

Kathimerini English - - Front Page -

New Democ­racy leader Evan­ge­los Meimarakis has told Kathimerini his party will nei­ther dis­band nor join forces with other op­po­si­tion group­ings to form a pro-Euro­pean front in pos­si­ble snap elec­tions.

Meimarakis, who re­placed An­to­nis Sa­ma­ras af­ter the July 5 ref­er­en­dum, said there is no scope for a coali­tion with other par­ties.

“Our aim is for New Democ­racy’s views to be ex­pressed,” he said. “It is very dif­fi­cult for there to be a coali­tion of par­ties be­cause the cur­rent elec­toral law does not give the [50-seat] bonus to coali­tions. So I can­not see the dis­so­lu­tion of New Democ­racy or other par­ties in fa­vor of a united Euro­pean party.”

The for­mer par­lia­men­tary speaker also said there are no plans for New Democ­racy to cease ex­ist­ing or for a new con­ser­va­tive party to be founded. “Par­ties have a long life in all coun­tries,” he said. “They can re­new, they can adapt.”

Meimarakis said early elec­tions would be “cat­a­strophic” for Greece but that if they were called, New Democ­racy would fo­cus its cam­paign on the 39 per­cent of Greeks who voted “yes” in last month’s ref­er­en­dum.

“When I say that New Democ­racy rep­re­sents the re­formist, so­cial cen­ter, I do not mean the cen­ter in the nar­row po­lit­i­cal sense,” he said. “I mean above all the cen­ter where the re­forms can hap­pen more ef­fec­tively and fairly.”

Ac­cord­ing to the New Democ­racy leader, “la­bels such as cen­ter-right or cen­ter-left have to a great de­gree dis­ap­peared.”

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