Excerpts from a speech given by Secretary General Colm Lauder to a gathering by young politicians from across Europe hosted by Young Fine Gael, on the eve of the 2014 EPP Congress in Dublin.
5th March 2014
Today we are only a day away from when we, the EPP family, will select the captain of our team, its commission president candidate, for one of the most significant elections since the foundation of the European Community.
You will remember, it was EPP parties that put their heads above the parapet, and charged the no-mans-land of political and economic chaos enthusiastically, though a sense of duty, by stepping into Government in Portugal, Spain, Greece, Ireland to salvage these economies after the excesses of the Socialists and Liberals during the good years.
However, the difficult decisions and measures our, EPP, Governments had to take to stabilise the Euro Currency, to maintain the cohesiveness of the European Union has made us a target for the Socialists and Eurosceptics as the May elections edge closer.
We should not apologise for taking such decisions, we should not feel guilty for implementing difficult and wholly necessary measures, and we should not bow to such pressure from unrepentant populists.