“The European Parliament and the European Union as a whole will be deprived of one of their greatest leaders. Martin Schulz has substantially contributed to increasing the political role and visibility of the European Parliament.
“The S&D Group will certainly be missing a strong fighter in his absence. We firmly believe that thanks to his experience and his undeniable attachment to European values, Martin Schulz will be decisive in the future success of the German SPD and the socialist family in Europe.
“For us, it is now evident that Martin’s decision will dramatically change the political dynamic within the EU institutions. The political issue therefore remains wide open. As Socialists and Democrats, we will stick for the principle that political balance must be ensured and respected.
“A right-wing monopoly on the EU Institutions would be unacceptable.”