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Talking Europe

On a mission to 'Make Social Democracy Great Again': Top MEP Udo Bullmann

It's a tumultuous time for social democracy in Europe. In France, Germany and Italy, the traditional centre-left parties have been struggling in national elections, as populist factions rise and centre-right parties strengthen government power. But that doesn't faze our guest. Veteran German MEP Udo Bullmann has just taken the reins of the Socialists and Democrats group in the European Parliament, promising during his campaign to "bring social democracy back to full strength".

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The S&D, as it's more commonly known, actually won the popular vote in the last European elections – but is only the second-largest group in the EU Parliament by number of seats, due to the way the voting system works.

Udo Bullmann explains why he’s optimistic about the S&D’s chances in next year’s European elections; gives us his reaction to a proposal to tie EU funding to member states’ respect for the rule of law; and tells us what he thinks of French President Emmanuel Macron’s plans for more and closer-integrated Europe in a time of widespread Euroscepticism.

 

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