European elections: Heads of state and government discuss top EU personnel

European elections: Heads of state and government discuss top EU personnel
European elections: Heads of state and government discuss top EU personnel

The election is over – now Scholz and Co. are negotiating the most important positions in the EU. The focus is primarily on the future of Ursula von der Leyen.

A good week after the European elections, the heads of state and government of the European Union are discussing the future top personnel of the EU. Following the electoral success of the centre-right EPP alliance, Commission President Ursula von der Leyen is hoping that the special summit will give the green light for a second term in office. The leadership of the Commission is considered one of the most important positions in the EU: the EU executive proposes laws and monitors compliance with common law.

In order for von der Leyen to be able to run for a second term, she must be proposed to Parliament as a candidate by the heads of state and government with a qualified majority. This means that in addition to the 13 heads of state and government who belong to the EPP party family like her, at least three other heads of large member states must vote for her.

For the subsequent election in the European Parliament, it is also dependent on the support of other party families such as the Social Democrats and Liberals, who became the second and third strongest forces behind the EPP in the European elections. In return, they will probably expect to be allowed to fill other top posts.

Portuguese Costa considered as council president

The meeting of the heads of state and government, which is planned to take place over dinner, will also involve negotiations on the future president of the European Council and the post of EU foreign policy chief. Former Portuguese Prime Minister António Costa is currently considered a possible candidate for the post of Council President.

Estonian Prime Minister Kaja Kallas is being considered as the new EU foreign policy chief. Like Chancellor Olaf Scholz (SPD), Costa belongs to the Socialist and Social Democratic party family, while Kallas, like French President Emmanuel Macron, is a member of the Liberals.

Scholz and Macron have not yet said publicly whether they will definitely support von der Leyen for a second term. However, Scholz stressed that there was no reason to delay the decision for too long and called for a decision to be made as quickly as possible.

At the G7 summit in Bari, he said in an interview with Welt TV and other media of the Axel Springer Group: “Of course it is clear that after the result of the elections everything speaks in favor of Ursula von der Leyen being able to have a second term in office.” The coalition agreement between the SPD, the Greens and the FDP also does not speak against this.

Meloni: Italy should be given “appropriate” consideration

Italy’s right-wing Prime Minister Giorgia Meloni initially kept her decision open. “The proposal is a matter for the EPP, and when it is complete, we will make our assessments,” she said at the end of the G7 summit in southern Italy. For her, it is important that Italy is “adequately” considered in the new Commission. It must also be clear “that Europe has understood the message of the European elections.”

At the end of next week, the heads of state and government will meet again in Brussels, this time for a regular summit. Ideally, the personnel planning will already be finalized and only needs to be formally confirmed. If not, the heads of state and government will probably continue to discuss the top positions.

Source: Stern

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