Alexis Tsipras, leader of Greece’s far-left Syriza party, recently traveled to Frankfurt and Rome to meet European leaders. He is softening his confrontational tone with Greece’s international lenders. He has a drafted an agenda for the first 100 days of a future government. The 40-year-old former student Communist is acting like a prime minister in waiting. Syriza, once a fringe far-left movement, is now the most popular party in Greece, representing the many voters who feel punished by the country’s EU/IMF bailout.
In May, the party easily won European elections and gained the governor’s seat for Greece’s most populous region. Today, it polls higher than any other party, leading by a margin of between 4 and 11 points over Prime Minister Antonis Samaras’s conservatives. One poll shows Tsipras as the most popular political leader in the country.
“The big change has begun. The old is on its way out. The new is coming,” Tsipras thundered in a recent speech to parliament. “No one can stop it.”