ATHENS – Behind in polls as the May 26 elections for Greek municipalities and the European Parliament loom, Prime Minister and ruling Radical Left SYRIZA leader Alexis Tsipras should resign if his party loses, major opposition New Democracy leader Kyriakos Mitsotakis said.
While the general elections for Greece don’t have to be held until October, Tsipras said he doesn’t believe the surveys and is predicting wins across the board despite plummeting in popularity after repeatedly reneging for four years on anti-austerity promises.
In a press conference carried live on most Greek TV channels, Mitsotakis criticized Tsipras for promising an extra month’s pay to pensioners ahead of the election but said New Democracy would support a one-off “allowance,” to help them.
Mitsotakis challenged Tsipras to accept his party’s proposal not to lower the tax-free income bracket as the Premier agreed with the country’s international creditors, adding that New Democracy would not impose the tax on previously exempt people and families.
SYRIZA – with Tsipras breaking yet another pledge – agreed to lower the current tax thresholds of 8,635 – 9,545 euros ($9,702-$10,724) to between 6,250-7,000 euros ($7,022-$7,865) beginning for 2019 incomes declared in 2020 tax returns, whacking the poorest the hardest, the group Tsipras swore he would protect.
Those with higher incomes will get tax cuts in keeping with breaking another promise to tax the rich and crush the oligarchy who, along with politicians and tax cheats, have essentially escaped the nine-year-long economic crisis.