demands the most from you: your children, your husband, your party or you
demands are many, they are permanent, and at the same time. I usually say that
I always come last, because when it comes to me there’s often no time left. But
the major challenge is to combine the party, the demands of politics, with my
family. Here, I always think that the person with the hardest part is my
husband. Because within the family circle, attention has to be given by me and
by him, because our children always come first. But I am always striving to
keep things balanced too. I think that my husband understands and supports me.
I enjoy this happiness.
way you’ve built up your political career left many people amazed by what
think that I’ve been in the CDS for a short while and, in fact, I’ve been in
the CDS for nine years, and that seems like a long time to me. In politics,
things have happened really quickly, but not just in politics, it was like that
for me before. In my work, at university, everything was really quick. I had my
PhD at 30, I was a tutor while still a fourth year student, then I was a
trainee lecturer, then I immediately started the PhD programme… so, it was all
very quick… after three years I was an associate professor. If I think about my
personal life, I got married at 23, very early given today’s standards. At 30 I
already had three children and now, I have another daughter. The context of my
professional, party and family life is very intense and quick, and I like it
fact that you started to take more care of your image, to start running, for
example, also part of your political campaign?
started running out of necessity, because having a child at 26 or at 28 or at
30, when I had my first three, and having one at 38, is very different. I
really had to make an effort if I didn’t want to end up a little chubby. To
this end, I first started to walk, and then I started to feel the need to run,
something that I would never have believed. If you’d told me this ten year
beforehand, I would have believed it impossible. I always hated running.
are elected mayor of Lisbon, will you give up your leadership of the CDS?
don’t see any incompatibility between the one and the other. If a prime
minister can be the leader of her party, I don’t see why a mayor of Lisbon
can’t remain the leader of her party too. This is another exercise in balance
the coming municipal elections say a lot about your work as the leader of the
CDS? How do you think voters will react at the ballot box?
municipal elections are always a difficult challenge for the CDS. At the
moment, the party is regaining some ground and my aim is to mobilise the CDS.
Tell them that the road isn’t easy, but if it had been we wouldn’t be where we
are today. We need to dig deep. I am setting an example, because I see there is
much to be done in Lisbon and I believe that I can spearhead a highly
motivating project for the city. We are duty bound to give the best we can at
all times. There are these highly prevalent structural and historical issues of
other political powers, which are difficult to overcome, we all know it, but we
have to set ambitious goals, on the one hand, and realistic ones on the
the relationship between the CDS and the PSD?
is a civilised relationship, in which two parties, which have an important
joint history, both have their autonomy, their identity, their own path, in
which we share, at the moment, a conviction that alone we are able to grow
more, to better assert our proposals. This is the work we are doing, faithfully
and with mutual respect. I have striven, within the CDS, to make exactly this
understood. We are growing on our own steam, we have a challenge, we are
looking ahead, we are highly ambitious. We also know that we have a natural
partner in the PSD and an ally in many battles, as is well known, incidentally,
in municipal affairs, for example.
the CDS and PSD ever run together again?
am confident that the CDS and the PSD can spearhead an alternative to the
government of the united left, with the PS party supported by the far left. We
need to build a path to get to this alternative. This path, from my
perspective, is most effectively built when done independently.
have said, on many occasions, that you like listening to others. Who are the
people you surround yourself with for advice? Is Paulo Portas in this
speak a great deal with the members of the executive board, which meets every
15 days, and with the national policy committee, which meets every month. Then
I speak to the people with whom I work more closely. There is daily contact
with various leaders in the party and parliamentary ones, to the extent that we
speak a great deal through a WhatsApp group,
in which several of us are connected, so that we contribute with references,
with ideas, with news, with aspects to be flagged. Paulo Portas is, at the
moment, very busy and very excited about his life. I speak with him from time
to time, but not regularly, not daily, not weekly.
«The context of my
professional, party and family life is very intense and quick»