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European election campaign is launched

brussels bureau

European election campaign is launched


Turnout for EU elections has been in freefall since the first such poll in 1979.

Five years ago, just 43 percent of registered voters bothered to cast ballots.

Now MEPs want to convince people to get involved. They have come up with new initiatives, hoping to tempt more Europeans to the ballot box.

Othmar Karas,MEP, centre-right group:

“For the first time, by March 2014 at the latest, the political parties in the European parliament will each choose a nominee for the position of president of the European Commission.”

The cost of this ‘Get Out The Vote’ campaign comes to some 16 million euros, and will be stepped up until May next year.

UKIP’s Nigel Farage says the whole idea is a waste of money:

“You know what? None of it (this campaign) will make any difference at all, because there is now a clear majority of Europeans across all member states who are dissatisfied with this Europe and the direction this European union is going in.”

But with history stacked against MEPs, it appears it will take more than snappy slogans to convince citizens of the European Parliament’s relevance.

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brussels bureau