Juncker: Decision for Ursula von der Leyen’s nomination was not very transparent

EPA-EFE/OLIVIER HOSLET

Ursula von der Leyen (L), the nominated President of the European Commission is welcomed by European Commission President Jean-Claude Juncker (R) during a visit at the European Commission in Brussels, Belgium, 04 July 2019.

Juncker: Decision for Ursula von der Leyen’s nomination was not very transparent


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European Commission President, Jean-Claude Juncker, says that the appointment of Germany’s Ursula von der Leyen as his successor, was not very transparent.
The outgoing President of the EU’s executive, said on Friday that the process of appointing his replacement, the German Defence minister Ursula von der Leyen , was not transparent and was an undesirable break with practice.
EU Heads of State and Government agreed last Tuesday to nominate von der Leyen for the Presidency of the European Commission, along with the current Managing Director of the IMF, Christine Lagarde for President of the European Central Bank (ECB), after three days and nights of heated debate.

The process which was to be followed was that of the Spitzenkandidaten, meaning, lead candidate. Through this process, Manfred Weber, the candidate of the European People’s Party (EPP) was expected to become President. The process was not respected, said Jean-Claude Juncker, also a member of the EPP political family.

“The process has not been very transparent,” said Juncker from Finland, where his Commission is visiting the new rotating presidency holders. Juncker was the first to benefit in 2014 from the spitzen candidate system, which was supported by the European Parliament but rejected by France in the negotiations, as he reiterated at a Helsinki press conference.

The choice of Ursula von der Leyen has yet to be validated by the European Parliament. Speaking of the Spitzen candidate system, Juncker expressed his regret at the outcome, saying that, “Unfortunately, it has not become a tradition,” … “I was the first and the last Spitzenkandidat.”

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