29 Jan, 2024

Austrian liberals pick EU lead candidate

On 27 January, NEOS announced the list of candidates and manifesto ahead of the European elections on 9 June at a party Congress in Vorarlberg, Austria.

NEOS Vice-President Helmut Brandstätter MP, a Member of the Austrian Parliament since 2019, was confirmed as the party’s lead candidate.

He is followed by Anna Stürgkh, member of ALDE Party’s 2024 Manifesto Drafting Committee and former chair of NEOS’ youth wing JUNOS.

The list was confirmed by party members after a three-stage process with broad participation from citizens.

“I am very happy about the fantastic team and would like to express my thanks to everyone who took part in the primaries and sent such a strong signal for Europe. Unlike other parties, the great candidates knocked down the door for us,” said NEOS party leader Beate Meinl-Reisinger.

“Anyone who is against Europe is against Austria. Anyone who wants to weaken the EU wants to weaken the Austrians. And anyone who is a friend of future destroyers such as AfD-Weidel, Le Pen, Putin or Orbán wants to make Austria poor, dependent and powerless. We stand for the future, freedom, security and cohesion. I stand for a Europe for all generations,” said Brandstätter.

NEOS also adopted its electoral manifesto entitled “Europe before deciding on the future: Our path to the United States of Europe”, focusing on the vision of a sovereign EU capable of making decisions for its own future.

The party will campaign for a strengthened EU Parliament with only one location, a smaller EU Commission with a President directly elected by citizens, as well as more transparency and a clear sanction mechanism against governments for violations of common values.

The event was also attended by ALDE Party Vice-President Kira Rudik MP (Golos, UA) who gave a speech on the strong liberal support for Ukraine in Austria amid Putin’s ongoing war of aggression.

Citizens in Austria will head to the polls on 9 June to elect 20 MEPs.

Photo: NEOS

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