New Democracy

From Academic Kids

For the Canadian political party that ran in the 1940 Canadian election see New Democracy (Canada)

Template:Politics of Greece

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New Democracy or ND (Greek: Νέα Δημοκρατία, Nea Dhimokratia), founded in 1974, is one of the main center-right liberal political parties in Greece. After an initial period of success, ND spent most of the 1980s and '90s in opposition. At the 7 March, 2004 Greek elections, ND returned to office under the leadership of Costas Caramanlis, nephew of the party's founder.

ND was founded in July 1974, two months after Constantine Caramanlis was sworn in as the first Prime Minister in the post-dictatorship era in Greece. Caramanlis had been Prime Minister twice before. In the first free elections of the new era, ND won by a landslide, securing 54.4% of the vote. It is higly disputable, however, that ND had such an influence to the electorate; it was considered as a "Caramanlis or tanks" dilemma, with the latter referring to the military, which still held a political influence.

Caramanlis intended ND to be a more modern and progressive right-wing party than those which had ruled Greece before the 1967 military coup. The party's ideology was defined as "radical liberalism," a term defined by ND as "the prevalence of free market rules with the decisive intervention of the state in favour of social justice."

In 1977, ND again won national elections. Under Caramanlis Greece redefined its relations with NATO, and tried to resolve the Cyprus issue following the Turkish invasion. In 1980, however, Caramanlis retired. His successor, George Rallis, was defeated at the following elections by the Panhellenic Socialist Movement (PASOK) led by Andreas Papandreou. Under ND leadership Greece joined the European Union in 1981. Caramanlis was then charged by opposing parties for not allowing a referendum, since the majority of people rejected the prospect of entry.

ND returned to power in a minority government under Constantine Mitsotakis in 1989, and a year later it formed a majority government after new elections. The party then suffered a period of successive loses. It was defeated in 1993 under Mitsotakis, in 1996 under Miltiades Evert, and in 2000 under Costas Caramanlis, nephew of the party's founder. In 2000 ND lost by the smallest margin in modern Greek history.

By 2003, however, ND was consistently leading the PASOK government of Costas Simitis in opinion polls. In January 2004 Simitis resigned and announced elections for March 7, at which Caramanlis faced the new PASOK leader, George Papandreou. Despite speculation that Papandreou would succeed in restoring PASOK's fortunes, Caramanlis had a comfortable victory in the elections and became Greece's first center-right liberal Prime Minister after eleven years.

ND is a member of the European People's Party, the European Democrat Union, the International Democrat Union and the Christian Democrat International.

External links

el:Νέα Δημοκρατία fr:Nea Dimokratia nl:Nea Dimokratia sv:Ny demokrati (Grekland)


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