Why Barry Andrews is running for Europe

This is the most important European election since we joined the Union. Now more than ever before, Dublin needs an MEP with the political experience, the expertise and the drive to make the EU work for our capital and for Ireland.

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To shape the future of the EU

As Director General of the Institute of International and European Affairs, I have seen at close quarters the debates happening in other member states.

The latest research shows support for our membership of the EU has never been higher. Brexit has made us more pro-European but it also fundamentally changes our relationship with the EU.

Ireland needs to become much more engaged in the Union. As the member state most impacted, we need our MEPs to be at the forefront of shaping its future in the wake of the UK’s departure.

For democratic values

The growth in anti-European sentiment is not confined to the UK. Across member states, the democratic values and respect for human rights that are core to the EU are under attack from extremes of the right and left.

What is at stake is the survival of the liberal democracy that brought peace to Europe and forty five years of remarkable social and economic progress to Ireland.

It’s no exaggeration to say that our children’s future depends on the decisions that will be taken in Europe over the next few years.

To build alliances

We need to elect MEPs who are in a position to build alliances so that they can influence the Parliament's response to big challenges of our time: climate change, integration, the breakdown, in social cohesion, innovation and digital responsibility. Fianna Fáil is part of the Alliance of Liberals and Democrats for Europe, a group that is tipped to hold the balance of power in the newly elected European Parliament.

To serve the public

I got into politics to serve the public interest.

At the height of our financial crisis in 2009, I introduced the first ever free pre school year for children, an innovation that has since benefited more than 800,000 children across the country.

My work over the last 8 years in international and European Affairs has been a continuation of public service. Now, as we enter a pivotal period for the EU, I want to use my experience and my deep knowledge of EU affairs to defend the European ideal and to be an influential voice for Dublin at the heart of the EU.

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