President Barroso was first elected to the Portuguese parliament in 1985 and was re-elected six times thereafter. Under his leadership, the Social Democratic Party won the general election in 2002 and he was appointed Prime Minister of Portugal in April of that year. He remained in office until July 2004 when he was nominated by the European Council and elected by the European Parliament to the post of President of the European Commission. In June 2009 the European Council unanimously nominated him for a second term as President of the European Commission, and he was re-elected by an absolute majority in the European Parliament in September 2009.
Notre quête d'unité européenne n'est pas une fin en soi, mais un moyen d'atteindre des finalités supérieures. Elle atteste la quête d'un ordre cosmopolitique. Malgré ses imperfections, l'Union européenne est une puissante source d'inspiration pour tant d'autres à travers le monde. Au‑delà de notre nation, au-delà de notre continent, nous faisons tous partie d'une même Humanité.