26 May 2014
Today was my first day back in the European Parliament following the election campaign. The same office as I had before the campaign, yet it feels all the same like a new start. First of all because of a fantastic new colleague, Anne-Marie Mineur, who was elected as a result of receiving 52,000 first preference votes, moving her from number 3 to number 2 on the SP list of candidates. And with a partly new team, because around election time people also give serious consideration to their future and applications are received from people who are interested in strengthening the SP’s team in the Brussels. So it’s a new start, though unfortunately not with the three or four seats that we hoped to win. Still, Anne-Marie and I will just have to do the work of four. Brussels is a long way from shaking off the SP, on the other hand. In percentage terms our vote rose to such an extent that only D66 gained more in these elections.
16 February 2014
The countdown has begun: fewer than a hundred days to the European elections on 22nd May, and less than a week before the SP national congress, where the election manifesto and list of candidates will be voted on by the party’s supreme decision-making organ. The European Parliament has adopted a motto for the elections: This time it’s different. In itself an empty slogan, but the SP can certainly agree with what it does say: these elections concern nothing more nor less than the preservation of our national democracy. Will the Netherlands become a province of Europe or will we remain at the controls? In the past we thought that it would never come to this, but this time is indeed different: it’s make or break!
24 November 2013
The final decision will be for the SP National Congress to make on February 22nd, but I was still pleased yesterday by the decision of the party council to nominate me to head the list of SP candidates for the European elections next May 22nd. I want to use this opportunity to thank all of the members of the party council for their continued confidence. This brings with it also responsibilities: together with the branches we must therefore ensure that SP voters don’t stay at home on polling day. If you want to put an end to the chilly neoliberal wind blowing through Europe, then our voices must become stronger, including within the European Parliament. In this, every vote counts.