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New Democracy draws up candidate list for May elections

New Democracy has finalized its candidate list for the May 25 European Parliament elections. It contains nominees from a range of backgrounds, including academia, sports and journalism, and is due to be announced in the next few days.

The recent resignation of cabinet secretary Panayiotis Baltakos had forced New Democracy officials to rethink the candidate list, amid fears that some of the names might be seen as too close to the hard right. As a result, outspoken political committee member Failos Kranidiotis stepped aside and the candidacy of former ultranationalist LAOS MP Thanasis Plevris was rejected.

Instead, New Democracy has opted to back existing MPs such as Manolis Kefaloyiannis and Costas Mousouroulis and MEPs such as Manolis Mavrommatis. However, candidates from other walks of life will also be added to the list. These are likely to include composer Stavros Xarchakos, professor of medicine Christodoulos Stefanadis, ex-Greek soccer team captain Theodoris Zagorakis, Mega TV political reporter Maria Spyraki and publisher Giorgos Kyrtsos.

A Public Issue poll for Efimerida ton Syntakton daily indicated that SYRIZA had stretched its lead over New Democracy for the European Parliament elections to 3 percentage points. The two parties had been level on 15.5 percent in Public Issues March poll but the survey for April put SYRIZA on 19.5 percent and New Democracy on 16.5 percent. The Olive Tree was in third with 5.5 percent, followed by To Potami with 5 percent, the Communist Party on 4.5 percent, Golden Dawn on 4 percent, and Democratic Left (DIMAR) and Independent Greeks both on 2.5 percent.

ekathimerini.com , Friday April 11, 2014 (20:40)  
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