If Denis de Rougemont invited us to “make Europeans” in order to make Europe, Emmanuel Macron set himself up as the leader of this new generation of Europeans who had the chance to be educated in an open Europe, where people and ideas circulated, met and mutually enriched each other.

Today, we are celebrating Emmanuel Macron’s 3 years as President of the Republic. It is difficult to use festive vocabulary in such a context when all of Europe mourns her dead and sick.

However, I would like to take this opportunity to salute the man of action that he has been since his election.
Elected on an ambitious and profoundly progressive programme, he was also the first to embody in a presidential programme a strong desire for European renewal.

Indeed, Emmanuel Macron was able to perceive and highlight the fact that national revitalisation required the Nation’s integration into a supranational project: Europe.

This is the whole meaning of the “And at the same time” that he chanted during the presidential campaign.
At the time, well before his election, I found in his approach the spirit of the founding fathers of Europe. He embodied with strength and conviction the ambitions of a generation of Europeans, the Erasmus generation, to which I belonged myself. That is why I did not wait for his declaration of candidacy to give him my full support and admiration in the process he was undertaking.

If Denis de Rougemont invited us to “make Europeans” in order to make Europe, Emmanuel Macron set himself up as the leader of this new generation of Europeans who had the chance to be educated in an open Europe, where people and ideas circulated, met and mutually enriched each other.

When I was Minister for European Affairs in Italy, we fought the battle for transnational lists together, both of us convinced that Europe could not be fully democratic as long as the political debate remained confined within the borders of individual states. Even if we did not win this battle, I did not hesitate for a second in 2018 to engage with Renaissance to build a new alliance of progressive forces in Europe in view of the 2019 European elections. My current involvement in the Renaissance delegation in the European Parliament has only one aim: to continue to forge a Europe that is a democratic power, a political and civic space that transcends national borders.

That is why today, on the third anniversary of the arrival of President Emmanuel Macron at the Elysée Palace, it is more important than ever to recall the reasons for our commitment at his side. The COVID19 pandemic reveals the need for a united and strong Europe. Citizens expect more from the European Union, whether in the fields of health, social protection, research, industry or sustainable development. They have become aware of the importance of a sovereign Europe.

Yet populism and nationalism have never posed such a great threat to the continent since the end of the Cold War. I experienced the effects of populism in my country after the victory of Matteo Salvini’s League and Luigi di Maio’s Five Star Movement. The victory of Emmanuel Macron’s project, “both from the right and from the left’, is the sine qua non condition for the survival of the European Union and its evolution towards the federalism that I hope and pray for. I will therefore continue to give my fullest support to the President of the Republic, because he is the only one who has the will to give back to Europeans the ability to decide their own destiny.