Saturday May 30, 2015 Search
Weather | Athens
14o C
09o C
News
Business
Comment
Life
Sports
Community
Survival Guide
Greek Edition
Jean-Claude Juncker wins centre-right backing in bid for top EU job

Former Luxembourg prime minister Jean-Claude Juncker, a fixture of European politics for the past 25 years, won the backing of Europe's centre-right parties on Friday to be their candidate for European Commission president.

Juncker, who lost office last year after 18 years as prime minister, beat French rival Michel Barnier, the EU's regulation chief, to become the European People's Party (EPP) top candidate for the European Parliament elections in May.

A first tally of votes among EPP delegates, including German Chancellor Angela Merkel, at a party congress held in Dublin, showed Juncker securing 382 votes to Barnier's 245.

It puts Juncker, 59 and one of the region's most-experienced deal brokers, in contention for the EU's most influential job, with oversight on legislation affecting 500 million Europeans.

While Juncker is a consummate dealer in the world of Brussels and European politics, he is also a divisive figure. As chairman of the Eurogroup of eurozone finance ministers during much of the region's debt crisis, he once said it was necessary sometimes to lie and said he favoured «secret, dark debates».

A strong believer in Europe and federalism, he has tempered some of his positions to win over more of the EPP, including Merkel, with whom he has not always seen eye-to-eye.

Juncker will now go head-to-head against Socialists and Democrats candidate Martin Schulz and Liberals candidate Guy Verhofstadt for the Commission presidency.

Whichever group comes top in the European Parliament elections - and polling at this point suggests it will either be the Social Democrats or the EPP - will have first dibs on trying to secure parliamentary backing to be Commission president.

However, the decision also depends on the EU's 28 leaders backing the person for the Commission. While Juncker may get support from many of the leaders with whom he shared a negotiating table for nearly two decades, others, such as Britain's David Cameron, are not fans.

A new Commission president - replacing Jose Manuel Barroso, who has held the post since 2004 - will assume office for five years from November. The Commission has principle responsibility for proposing EU legislation and takes the lead in trade negotiations and in coordinating foreign policy.

Choosing a lead candidate for Europe's main political groups is aimed at making the vote more relevant to citizens, who have turned out in steadily fewer numbers to vote in European Parliament elections since the first were held in 1979.

[Reuters]

ekathimerini.com , Friday March 7, 2014 (16:58)  
Greece, creditors seek breakthrough as clock runs down
Coast Guard officials linked to migrant traffickers
Civil aviation union cancels action on minister’s pledge
4.2-magnitude quake strikes off Crete
Greek credit contraction amounted to 2.4 pct in April
Credit expansion remained in negative territory last month as it contracted by 2.4 percent in April, according to data released on Friday by the Bank of Greece. In March the decline had come...
Export-oriented firms benefit from euro rate
The favorable shift in the exchange rate of the euro against the US dollar has led to the creation of two categories among Greek listed companies, as those who export their products to dolla...
Inside Business
SOCCER
Wemmer pens three-year deal with Panathinaikos
German defender Jens Wemmer has signed a three-year contract for an undisclosed sum with Panathinaikos, the Greek Super League club announced on Friday. Right-back Wemmer, 29, has been playi...
SOCCER
Panathinaikos conquers PAOK through Tavlaridis goal
A Stathis Tavlaridis goal has brought Panathinaikos to practically within one point from clinching a spot in next season’s Champions League qualifiers, as the Greens made it three out of thr...
Inside Sports
COMMENTARY
Zenobia, Barbara, Christine and the general’s daughter
ATHENS – Lovely Palmyra has fallen to the zombie horde and its people are being slaughtered as the ancient city awaits its fate. It is Friday, May 22, 2015, and from my window I see the end-...
INTERVIEW
The eurozone’s ‘ambiguous’ architecture
“That’s not something you’re supposed to say in public, right?” In his humble way, Thomas Sargent, Nobel Prize winner in Economics, tries to avoid the question posed to him by Kathimerini re...
Inside Comment
SPONSORED LINK: FinanzNachrichten.de
SPONSORED LINK: BestPrice.gr
 RECENT NEWS
1. Wemmer pens three-year deal with Panathinaikos
2. Greek credit contraction amounted to 2.4 pct in April
3. Export-oriented firms benefit from euro rate
4. VAT hike would put several Athens hotels at risk
5. ATHEX: May ends with a rise of 0.3 pct
6. Greece, creditors seek breakthrough as clock runs down
more news
Today
This Week
1. Greece creditors say no deal near as G-7 frustration vented
2. Only Greece can end its miserable 'Groundhog Day'
3. 12 Russians injured in lightning strike at ruins on Crete
4. Next Greek aid program isn’t on table yet, says Moscovici
5. Some blame EU Commission for Greek obstinacy in debt talks
6. The eurozone’s ‘ambiguous’ architecture
Today
This Week
1. Hotel contracts with a ‘Greek default clause’
2. Some 300 mln left banks on Tuesday
3. Neither Grexit nor a dual currency will solve Greece’s problems
4. No more 'quick and dirty' fixes for Greece
5. Romantic notions meet reality
6. Endless confusion and worry
   Find us ...
  ... on
Twitter
     ... on Facebook   
About us  |  Subscriptions  |  Advertising  |  Contact us  |  Athens Plus  |  RSS  |   
Copyright © 2015, H KAΘHMEPINH All Rights Reserved.