Daily Archives: March 12, 2009

Tony Barber

The European Parliament’s constitutional affairs committee adopted a report this week that would limit the role of the future European Union president, a job that will be created next year if the EU’s LIsbon treaty comes into effect.

The committee says the president should “represent” the EU’s heads of state and government in foreign policy matters, but not “assume the power to conduct political negotiations in the name of the Union”. Read more

Tony Barber

Among the various headaches keeping European Union leaders awake at night is the prospect of a thumping Conservative victory in the UK’s next general election, which must be held by June 2010. The fear is that the new Tory government would be so anti-EU that it would make the 1979-1997 governments of Margaret Thatcher and John Major look like Jacques Delors’s European Commission in its heyday.

The nightmare inched one step closer on Wednesday when the Conservatives confirmed their intention of leaving the European People’s Party (EPP), the European Parliament’s main centre-right political group. This is a club with members from all over the 27-nation bloc. It is the largest group in the parliament, with about 37 per cent of the seats, and it will probably retain that position after June’s European Parliament elections. Read more