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POLITICO's EU Confidential

262 EpisodesProduced by POLITICO EuropeWebsite

From Brussels and around the Continent — the top European politics podcast.

31:28

Episode 21: Greek opposition leader Kyriakos Mitsotakis — Oettinger's car clash — UK Cabinet chaos

Host Ryan Heath interviews Kyriakos Mitsotakis, the head of Greece's New Democracy party and opposition leader in parliament.

The outsider and the Mitsotakis dynasty: The opposition leader is the son of a former Greek prime minister, Konstantinos Mitsotakis, yet ran for the party leadership with virtually no support from fellow MPs. Instead, he won in an open primary thanks to support from ordinary Greek center-right voters rather than party elites. “My career is not the typical career of a professional politician," he said. "I was educated in the U.S. and I spent 10 years working in the private sector before I entered politics. At the same time, I'm also considered a reformer within my own party. So I am changing my own party and this sometimes, I'll be very honest with you, is causing friction.”

Mitsotakis claims Tsipras has been costly: The New Democracy leader says the price of electing Prime Minister Alexis Tsipras in 2015 can be counted by Greeks in cash. “If you just look at the projections of the European Commission back in 2014, they were predicting at the time that the economy would grow 2.9 percent and 3.6 percent in 2015-2016. We had a recession in both. We paid a very heavy bill for experimenting with Mr. Tsipras.”

Big ambitions: Mitsotakis says he would not be tinkering around at the edges if he were to become Greek prime minister. “There's an issue of seriousness competence, professionalism in governance and government,” he said, adding that he envisions “a smaller and more efficient government. I want to streamline public spending. I want to cut taxes. I want to make Greece an attractive investment destination.”

EU WTF moments of the week — Oettinger's car industry defense and UK omnishambles: The podcast panel ponders why German Commissioner Günther Oettinger went to the wall for a position defending the German car industry when all 27 other European Commissioners disagreed with him. And after the second British Cabinet ministerial resignation in a week, we wonder: Who's next?

Dear POLITICO: The panel advises a male correspondent who complains that women in the EU institutions use their sexuality to manipulate men and advance their careers.

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