THE GENESIS AND EVOLUTION OF A FACTION OF THE EUROPEAN PEOPLE' S PARTY (THE CHRISTIAN DEMOCRATS) WITHIN THE EUROPEAN PARLIAMENT (Geneza i ewolucja frakcji Europejskiej Partii Ludowej (Chrzescijanskich Demokratów) w Parlamencie Europejskim)
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The article is devoted to the genesis and evolution of a faction of the European People's Party (EPP), currently the largest political faction within the European Parliament (EP). Although the literature dealing with the subject of political factions within the EP is growing increasingly, one of its fundamental deficiencies is overlooking the potential influence, within a given faction, of the political ideology of the parties represented on the method of its organisation. It is for this reason that the author proposes to explain the evolution of the EPP first and foremost through focussing on the influence of Christian Democrat ideology on its work methods, as well as on attempts to extend the EPP by a new party and the effects thereon. Conceptual solutions dealing with the motives underlying the formation and expansion of political factions precede the actual analysis, as does a brief discussion of the influence of Christian Democrat ideology on that party's organisation in Western Europe. In the main section, the author undertakes to verify the hypothesis that the EPP faction's strategy of expansion in the 1980s and 90s, primarily through opening itself to conservative parties, resulted from the definitional multidimensionality of Christian Democracy and Christian Democratic movements. The developmental stage of the EPP (1953-1999) which is presented, including, in particular, its expansion through new members, is a positive verification of the afore-mentioned hypothesis. Nonetheless, in conclusion, the author claims that within the EPP faction two Christian Democrat blocs appear to exist, which, although they are united in certain political ideas, differ diametrically in their visions of conducting policy and building a political league.
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