The ÖVP has launched an intensive election campaign in Burgenland

President Nehhammer and EU front candidate Lopatka emphasize the importance of the EU as a peace project and warn against its destruction and the FPÖ. The People’s Party’s main European concerns are external border security and less “over-regulation”.

The ÖVP announced its final campaign in the EU election campaign in Oberwart on Friday. Chancellor Karl Nehhammer and top candidate Reinhold Lopatka stressed the importance of the EU as a peace project and warned of its demise and the FPÖ. The People’s Party itself wants to argue for more external border protection and less “over-regulation” in the EU parliament.

Austria has “benefited endlessly” from the EU, Nehhammer noted – it is seen above all as a place for “the beginning of the final rush” in Burgenland. “If the EU doesn’t exist, we have to find it today,” Lopatka said.

Nehhammer and Lopatka repeatedly criticize the FPÖ for “leaving the EU”.

Both have repeatedly criticized the Freedom Party for leaving the EU. The Union brought Austria prosperity and security as well as peace and freedom. “You should not play Russian roulette with our prosperity and security,” Lopatka insisted.

He pleaded for “a greater Europe” in terms of passenger and freight transport, gas, energy and capital markets. However, he prefers “more regulation” and less “unnecessary” regulation. “The forest area in Austria is growing by 13 football fields every day. Do I need a regulation that protects us from deforestation?” The EU should focus on the big problems and leave the smaller problems at the level they arise, he said. Nehhammer called for a 25 percent cut in regulations.

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“From Peaceful Union to Defense Union”

For Lopatka, the further development is “from a union of peace to a security union” with external border security. He demanded that asylum procedures be implemented at the external border or transit zones in third countries. More recently, with the Asylum and Migration Agreement, the EU “finally took a decision that goes in the right direction”.

Nehammer also highlighted the importance of the European Union for peace. By their founding, European states had “truly learned from history” after the two world wars. So the ideas about leaving are not relevant, the chancellor said in the direction of the FPÖ: “On the right, people imagine an imaginary red button that you press, and then he makes a swipe.” Andreas Popler, head of the SPÖ federal party: “Suddenly we are hearing that on the left the union is an ambiguous construction.”

The ÖVP wants to “ensure that this union does not move away from the people”. “We want to create. We are against division, against seduction. It’s about creating the future,” Nehamer stressed. He was optimistic about the “final phase” of the election campaign. After all, we have a marathon runner with Lopatka. (APA)

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