“We want and will pursue national coordination with everyone but national coordination is one thing and a coalition is another,” he said.
“Greece will not change on the back of petty political bargaining that will sacrifice the national interest.” In what was essentially a speech launching his campaign to be prime minister, Samaras touched on a number of themes that New Democracy hopes will boost its support over the next few weeks. This included the issue of growth, which Samaras said would come through use of EU structural funds, economic reforms and an overhauled tax system. He also pledged to crack down on crime, particularly self-styled anarchists who vandalize private and public property. Samaras also repeated his long-standing position of wanting to repeal Greece’s citizenship law, which was passed in 2010 and grants Greek citizenship to some second-generation citizens.
The ND leader defended his decision to enter the current coalition government and vote for the terms of the new loan agreement, even though some within his party opposed this, by saying that Greece’s membership of the euro was at stake. He said the second memorandum was a better deal than the first since it reduces Greece’s debt through the PSI. Panos Kammenos, one of the ND deputies that voted against the new EU-IMF deal, is due to launch his new right-wing party, Independent Greeks, on Sunday.