The EU hopes that Taylor Swift and other pop starlets will come to its rescue in June’s European elections. With pollsters predicting significant gains for the right, Brussels’ ruling elite is preparing to turn to ‘famous artists, actors, athletes and other stars for help’. Their ambition is to persuade these personalities to encourage their young fans to vote in the elections – and to vote for them, the ruling centrist elite.
‘No one can mobilise young people better than young people, that’s how it works,’ said Margaritis Schinas, the EU Commissioner for Promoting the European Way of Life, recently. ‘That works better than commissioners speaking from the press room.’
A generation ago, rockers and movie stars revelled in their rebellious image, but the 21st Century has spawned a new breed of celebrity: bourgeois, bland and excruciatingly conformist. Among the artists on whom the EU is pinning its hopes are Spanish singer Rosalía, the Belgian rapper Stromae and Dua Lipa, the British pop star of Albanian heritage.
But it is an American that Brussels is banking on. ‘Taylor Swift will be in Europe in May,’ said Schinas, a reference to the European leg of the singer’s world tour. It kicks off on Paris on May 9 and takes in most major European cities, including Stockholm, Lisbon, Madrid and Dublin. Swift emphatically endorsed Joe Biden in 2020 and the Democrats want her to do the same again ahead of November’s presidential election, believing she will mobilise the young to vote against Donald Trump.
The EU elite would love Swift to rally their young against the right. ‘I very much hope that she does the same for young Europeans and I very much hope that someone from her media team follows this press conference and relays this request to her,’ said Schinas.