Apart from the many additional spending measures that Prime Minister Kyriakos Mitsotakis announced on Saturday evening in his opening speech at the Thessaloniki International Fair, he also kicked off the pre-election period.

Mitsotakis made many explicit references to the dilemmas facing the electorate. “Either we keep moving forward, or we turn back!” he said, adding “either we give progress a second chance or we risk a second disaster!”

The hard dilemmas were accompanied by a warning to the citizens: “It is my duty to warn the citizens: nothing of what we have achieved is certain. And anything can be demolished with one wrong move. But that’s how democracy works. By leaving this decision exclusively in the hands of the people. And people have seen and learned and know the path they will choose,” Mitsotakis added.

Mitsotakis also clarified that his program cannot be implemented in a single four-year term, but has a longer horizon. He explicitly mentioned 2030.

“The normal timeline says we are entering the last year of our first term in office. The social calendar, however, shows that the needs of the people go beyond four-year terms,” Mitsotakis said.

He became more explicit when he explained that deep-rooted inefficiencies cannot be overcome in a siέτσι εύκολα (εννοώντας σε μια τετραετία). Having accomplished his first-term goals, he was now focused on what remained to be done.

Finally, Mitsotakis clearly defined what is at stake in the upcoming elections. “We are called to choose between the path of growth and that of regression; that of self-confidence or self-doubt; patriotism or national consciousness; economic prosperity for all or stagnation,” he said.

The prime minister finally made it personal: do people trust him or do they trust his predecessor as prime minister and now opposition leader Alexis Tsipras? “Now we know who can manage and overcome crises and who are those who remain sullen bystanders… That is why, when the time comes, we will not only choose a government, but also a governor.”