LAST EUROPEAN LETTER

N. 79 May 2024 | What is at stake in the European elections on 6-9 June

The European elections in June 2024 will be of extraordinary importance for the European Union and its citizens. At stake is our future. In the world, we are witnessing the return of imperial powers, we are threatened by a war on our continent and the danger of its expansion, while democracy is under attack; and at the same time, we have to face the challenge of Artificial Intelligence, climate change, large migration flows and increasing inequalities. In this framework, the sovereignty of European states and their capacity for independent political action are more insignificant than ever.

Faced with such a profound change in the political history of our continent, and with such dramatic risks threatening our society, we, the undersigned, feel it is our duty to unite in a recognisable network the people who believe that the solution is the European Federation, as enshrined by the Ventotene Manifesto, the Resolutions of the Hague Congress, where the European Movement International was born, and the Schuman Declaration. Almost 70 years after Jean Monnet created the Action Committee for the United States of Europe, we want to draw on his experience and teaching in order to relaunch it and therefore we issue this Appeal to citizens and parties on the eve of the vote for the renewal of the European Parliament.

Participation. First of all, we want to remind the citizens of the importance of their vote in the European elections in June. Democracy works and prospers thanks to the participation of citizens and rests on the legitimacy and trust that citizens give to institutions. Participation in the vote is the first and fundamental act in this regard. If we are to be able to count on the European Union to safeguard our security militarily, economically and socially – because these are areas in which we must act united and in which individual states are now powerless -, it is crucial that the consent and will of the citizens is manifested in the elections.

Pro-European choice. The choice expressed in the vote is equally fundamental. Some political forces point to Europe as the cause of our problems, and call for it to be dismantled, to leave the states freer. But free to do what? Simply to fight each other, to oppose each other on the basis of trying to assert their own national interests. Would we be stronger in this way and able to overcome the challenges in front of us? The parties that want to weaken the European Union confuse selfishness with freedom, which instead is exercised where the institutions guarantee it, respecting the interests of all, while promoting the common good and solidarity. That is why it is important to understand that extremist parties are not only endangering the European Union, but also the peoples of Europe and each of us individually; and instead to give support to the political parties that are committed to building a more united European Union, more capable of acting and protecting its citizens.

Pan-European debate. Pro-European political forces must be able to speak to citizens about European challenges and solutions. Therefore, we call on them to develop a European debate so that voters can understand the transnational dimension of the challenges, develop an awareness of the common destiny and also of the potential represented by a stronger Europe, where culture and creativity would play a more important role.

Towards the United States of Europe. The pro-European political families supported the European Parliament´s project of amendments to the Treaties in November 2023, written under the leadership and program of the Spinelli Group in line with the demands of the citizens expressed during the Conference on the Future of Europe. In consequence, these political forces have also included in their electoral manifestos the reform of the Treaties, which is fundamental for the continued federalization of the Union.

Therefore, we call on to the reconstituted pro-European parliamentary Groups after the European elections to condition the election of the President of the Commission and his/her colleagues to the support to launch a Convention for the federal reform the Treaties.

We also issue a call onto the European Council of 27-28 June 2024 to act swiftly on the proposal of the European Parliament, in line with article 48 of the Treaty of the European Union, and agree to organise a Constitutional Convention. This is absolutely necessary in order to equip the European Union with the competences, including in the defence field, resources, and institutional and decision-making mechanisms needed to act authoritatively and effectively internally and externally and to protect the values and interests of Europe and its citizens.

Most of the solutions to our concerns and many of our hopes will be decided on 6-9 June 2024, with the European vote. Everyone should clearly feel this responsibility and understand the importance of what is at stake. Now as in 1941 and 1950, our creative efforts shall be as high as the challenges and dangers that Europe and the world are facing. states. 

Brussels, 7 May 2024

PROMOTERS

Domenec Ruiz Devesa
MEP and President of Union of European Federalists

Philippe Laurette
President of the Jean Monnet Association

Miguel Ángel Martin Ramos
Vice President of the Jean Monnet Association

Sandro Gozi
MEP and Chair of the Spinelli Group

Christelle Savall
President of Young European Federalists (JEF Europe)

Guy Verhofstadt
MEP, Former Prime-Minister of Belgium

You can sign the Appeal at this link.