This article analyses the nature of Portuguese political parties' attitudes towards Europe. Three major European dimensions are focused upon: identity, representation and scope of governance. Their consistency over time and their relevance for party competition are analysed, drawing on the INTUNE Euromanifesto Dataset. We observe that behind the Portuguese party system's apparent enthusiasm towards the European project, there are significant differences between the parties on European integration issues. Our three independent variables (left vs. right; mainstream vs. extreme; incumbent vs. opposition) are clearly related, with differences in regards to a European identity, but not a national identity. Moreover, mainstream parties adopted favourable opinions towards the outcomes of the integration into the European Union (although to a lesser extent after 1991), while extremist parties tend to be more pessimistic. In connection to scope of governance in the six policy areas considered, differences (either in terms of mainstream/extreme and incumbent/opposition status) are more evident in defence and foreign policy areas.
- Political parties