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Volt Europa

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Volt Europa
PresidentAndrea Venzon
Vice PresidentDamian Boeselager
FoundersAndrea Venzon
Colombe Cahen-Salvador
Damian Boeselager
Founded29 March 2017; 4 years ago (2017-03-29)
IdeologySocial liberalism
European federalism
Colours     Purple
European Parliament
1 / 751
Flyers by Volt in Germany

Volt Europa (frequently abbreviated Volt) is a pro-European political movement that serves as the pan-European structure of EU parties for the European Parliament elections in May 2019. It was founded in 2017 by Andrea Venzon, supported by Colombe Cahen-Salvador and Damian Boeselager. The organisation follows a "pan-European approach" in many policy fields such as climate change, migration, economic inequality, international conflict, terrorism and the impact of the technological revolution on the labour market.[4] During the European Parliament elections in May 2019 the party won one seat by winning 0.7 percent of votes in Germany making front runner Damian Boeselager its first Member of the European Parliament.[5]


European elections 2019 promo by Volt Netherlands, May 2019

Volt Europa was founded on 29 March 2017 by Andrea Venzon, supported by Colombe Cahen-Salvador and Damian Boeselager. According to the founders, the foundation was a reaction to growing populism in the world and to Brexit.[6][7] In March 2018, the first national subsidiary party was founded in Hamburg, Germany but Volt now has them in every EU member state.The subsidiary with the most members is Italy, the home country of Andrea Venzon.[8]

Volt Europa was incorporated as a non-profit association in Luxembourg under the name Volt Europa,[9] Vox Europe was the former name of the organisation.[10] Today, the movement has more than 25,000 members in more than 30 European countries.[3] Around 70% of the current members are reported to not have been politically active before joining Volt.[11]

From 27 October to 28 October 2018 Volt Europa hosted its General Assembly meeting in Amsterdam, presenting the Amsterdam Declaration programme for the European Parliament as well.[12]

From 22 to 24 March 2019 Volt Europa hosted its first European Congress in Rome[13], presenting its candidates for the 2019 European Parliament election. The keynote speakers list included:

  • Paolo Gentiloni, former Prime Minister of Italy and President of the Italian Democratic Party;
  • Emma Bonino, senator of the Italian Parliament, former European Commissioner for Health and Food Safety, former Member of the European Parliament and former minister of the Government of Italy;
  • Enrico Giovannini, former minister of the Government of Italy;
  • Marcella Panucci, Director General of the General Confederation of Italian Industry;
  • Sandro Gozi, President of the Union of European Federalists;
  • Antonio Navarra, President of the Mediterranean Center for Climate Change.

Political agenda[edit]

Economically, Volt Europa supports digitization, investment in the green and blue economy, the fight against poverty and inequality (also with the establishment of a European minimum wage), a more unified European tax system and the public-private partnerships to revive economic growth and reduce unemployment; it also supports solid investments on welfare policies, in particular related to education and healthcare.[14]

Socially, Volt supports anti-sexism, anti-racism and LGBT+ rights. Institutionally, it supports vast reforms of the European Union: a common management of migratory phenomena, a European army and eurobonds.[15][16][14]

In media reporting, the organisation is described as aiming to foster democracy on the EU level. It stresses the importance of a united European voice that is heard in the world.[17] Also, it supports the idea of a federated Europe with a strong European Parliament in which the citizens become the very center of European democracy.[18][19]

Volt is distinct from other pro-European movements such as Pulse of Europe or the European Federalists as it aims to participate in European, local and national elections through its subsidiary organisations in EU member states. Its first major objective is the European Parliament elections in May 2019.[20]

Volt Europa has been compared to Emmanuel Macron's La Republique en Marche movement[21] and could also be compared to recent pro-European parties such as NEOS in Austria.

National sections[edit]


As "Volt Österreich", the movement is also registered as a party in Austria and was planning to take part in the European elections in 2019.[22] The 2600 signatures necessary for this were not collected in time, Volt Europe will therefore not be eligible for election in Austria.


With "Volt Deutschland" the party is represented in Germany and thus competes within the Federal Republic of Germany for elections.[23] Volt Deutschland's basic programme is based on a Policies Proposal, which is also fundamental for Volt Europe.[24] The initial focus will be on five "challenges" which Volt Germany wants to address at local, regional and national level, namely "an intelligent state, social equality, economic renaissance, politically active citizenship" and "global balance". In addition to these priorities, a transnational EU reform in accordance with the programmes of Volt Germany and Volt Europe is being sought.[25] Volt Deutschland's programme for the 2019 European elections 2019 is identical to that of all other European sections. It was adopted as the "Amsterdam Declaration" by all Volt sections in October 2018.[26]
In the 2019 European Election "Volt Deutschland" gained 248 824 votes which is equivalent to 0.7% of total votes in Germany according to preliminary results shared by the German Federal Returning Officer. As front runner Damian Freiherr von Boeselager will get one of the 96 seats from delegates from Germany in the European Parliament.[27][28]
"Volt Deutschland" was especially strong in German cities. With 2.9% the highest percentage of votes was gained in the city of Heidelberg. In Munich and Karlsruhe "Volt Germany" gained 2.2% of the votes. In the two largest German cities Berlin and Hamburg the share of the votes was 1.2% each.[29]


In Italy, Volt Europa took part to Novi Ligure's municipal election via its Italian branch "Volt Italia".[30]


In Switzerland, Volt Europa reports regular meetings in Geneva and Zurich[31], but is neither registered as a party nor takes part in elections. This is partly due to Switzerland's lack of membership of the European Union.


2019 European Parliament election[edit]

Member state Leading candidate List approved
Italy Andrea Venzon Red XN failed to collect 150,000 signatures[32]
Germany Damian Freiherr von Boeselager, Marie-Isabelle Heiß Green tickY 15 March 2019[33]
France Colombe Cahen-Salvador Red XN failed to collect €800,000[34]
The Netherlands Reinier Van Lanschot Green tickY 9 April 2019[35]
Belgium Christophe Calis, Marcela Válková Green tickY 4 April 2019[36] (Flanders)
Bulgaria Nastimir Ananiev Green tickY 10 April 2019[37]
Luxembourg Rolf Tarrach Siegel Green tickY 27 March 2019[38][39]
Austria Benjamin Wolf Red XN failed to collect 2,600 signatures[40]
Sweden Michael Holz Green tickY 2 April 2019[41]
Spain Bruno Sánchez-Andrade Nuño Green tickY 29 April 2019[42][43][44]
UK Andrea Venzon Yes Electoral Commission rejected application as "incomplete"[45][46], Andrea Venzon now running as an independent candidate in the London constituency.[47][48]
Portugal N/A Red XN failed to collect 7,500 signatures[49]

On May 26th, 2019, with 248,824 votes (0.7% on a national basis), Volt Europa elected its first Member of the European Parliament in Germany [50].


The party uses crowdfunding as well as direct donations to fund itself. The party states that it publishes every donation exceeding 3,000 Euro per donation or donor per year within 15 days from its receipt on the party's website. As the two largest donors, the party's website lists the Open Society Initiative for Europe with 19,191 Euros as well as the businessman Christian Oldendorff, founder and CEO of ParkU,[51][52], with a donation of 25,000 Euros (date 27.05.2019).[53]

The website of the German section lists several more donors. Among them are Christian Oldendorff with a donation of 95,000 Euros, Claus von Loeperwith a donation of 20,000 Euros as well as several more donors listed with donations of 10,000 Euros or 5,000 Euros (date 27.05.2019). [54]


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  2. "EU elections summary". Twitter. 2019-05-26. Retrieved 2019-05-26.
  3. 3.0 3.1 "Volt Forlì al congresso paneuropeo di Roma 2019". Forlì Today (in italiano). 2019-03-24. Retrieved 2019-04-01.
  4. "About us". Volt. Retrieved 13 June 2018.
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  7. "Volt wants to become the first pan-EU political party". The Economist. Retrieved 2 November 2018.
  8. "POLITICO Brussels Playbook, presented by the Barilla Foundation: Europe in 4 speeches — New US ambassador — A different Brexit story". POLITICO. 2018-05-11. Retrieved 13 June 2018.
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  27. Bundeswahlleiter (Federal Returning Officer). "Results European Election 2019".
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  29. Bundeswahlleiter (Federal Returning Officer). "Results European Election 2019 on party level" (PDF) (in Deutsch). pp. 74 ff.
  30. "Volt Italia - Candidati consiglio comunale Novi Ligure" (in italiano). Retrieved 2019-05-27.
  31. "Volt Switzerland". www.facebook.com. Retrieved 2019-05-06.
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  34. "Facebook post" (in French).CS1 maint: Unrecognized language (link)
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  37. "Facebook post" (in Bulgarian).CS1 maint: Unrecognized language (link)
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  41. "Val till Europaparlamentet - Partier och valsedlar". data.val.se (in svenska). Retrieved 2019-04-10.
  42. "Resolución de 23 de abril de 2019, de la Presidencia de la Junta Electoral Central, de publicación de las candidaturas presentadas a las elecciones de Diputados al Parlamento Europeo convocadas por Real Decreto 206/2019, de 1 de abril, a celebrar el 26 de mayo de 2019". boe.es (in español). Retrieved 2019-04-24.
  43. "Un total de 39 listas optan al Parlamento Europeo en las elecciones del 26 de mayo". europapress.es (in español). Retrieved 2019-04-25.
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  45. Finalised party registration decisions Electoral Commission
  46. https://www.electoralcommission.org.uk/__data/assets/pdf_file/0003/252651/2019-Party-registration-decisions-english-version.pdf Party Registration Decisions - English Version] Electoral Commission
  47. "Volt UK 💜🇬🇧🇪🇺 on Instagram: "🇪🇺🗳🇬🇧 We are glad to announce that Volt will be participating in the European elections in Britain! Given that the Electoral commission…"". Instagram. Retrieved 2019-04-27.
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  49. "Europeias: são novos, são pequenos e prometem ser melhores. Mas será que estão a conseguir?". observador.pt (in português). 2019-03-18. Retrieved 2019-05-05.
  50. "2019 European election results - National results: Germany". Retrieved 2019-05-27.
  51. [1]
  52. [2]
  53. "volteuropa.org". Retrieved 2019-05-26.
  54. Volt Deutschland. "Transparency donors" (in Deutsch).

External links[edit]

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