Juncker steps forward for Barroso’s job


Former Luxembourg Prime Minister Jean-Claude Juncker, the EU's longest-serving elder statesman, threw his hat into the ring yesterday (9 January) for the presidency of the European Commission to succeed José Manuel Barroso.

Juncker, 59, who governed for 19 years until a general election defeat last October and also chaired eurozone finance ministers for eight years from 2005 to 2013, told Germany's Inforadio: "I would be willing (to do the job), in principle, if the election programme and other things work out."

Voters across the 28-nation European Union vote in late May to elect a new European Parliament. Then in June, EU leaders nominate a candidate to head the executive European Commission, taking account of the election results.

The new legislature must then vote to confirm the nominee by an absolute majority of the 751 lawmakers.

Juncker, a convinced European federalist and member of the centre-right Christian Social party, was asked whether he would run to be the lead candidate of the European People's Party (EPP), the main conservative grouping in the EU legislature, with a view to the Commission presidency.

European Parliament leaders have contended that the lead candidate of the party that comes first in the election should be nominated as Commission president.

However some EU leaders, notably German Chancellor Angela Merkel, have voiced reservations about that procedure, which they see as a parliamentary power-grab, stretching the terms of the 2009 Lisbon Treaty.

Barroso, a conservative former Portuguese prime minister, has run the Commission since 2004.

The Socialist group, the second largest force in the current legislature, has nominated Martin Schulz, a German Social Democrat who now presides over the European Parliament, as its candidate.

Other possible contenders for the EPP nomination include French conservative Michel Barnier, who is the European commissioner for the internal market and financial regulation.

However, political sources have said Merkel may prefer a serving conservative prime minister such as Ireland's Enda Kenny, Poland's Donald Tusk or Finland's Jyrki Katainen as Commission president.

The EPP will anoint its candidate at a convention in Dublin on 6-7 March.

The third largest political group, the centre-right Liberals, is holding a primary contest between former Belgian Prime Minister Guy Verhofstadt and Finnish European Commission Vice-President for Economic and Monetary Affairs Olli Rehn. 

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David Bennett's picture

Brussels will love him - "“When it becomes serious, you have to lie”"

David Bennett's picture

Brussels will love him - "“When it becomes serious, you have to lie”"

international foundation for research and innovation  's picture

Taking into consideration that during more than 20 years he was leading Luxembourg and he suceed to make people vote him and his party for so long time despite his incompetence and millions of problems which have not been solved in Luxembourg we beleave his a great magician we will give you 3 examples

1) Luxembourg major economic activity is banking and financial business but Luxembourg University is not ranked even in top 700 His majors competitor Switzerland have a business school ranked in top 3-5 and ,Singapore University is ranked very well Because of this Luxemboug economy is losing billions of euro
2) Luxembourg second major economic activity have link with steel and chimical production two of the most big source of pollution in the world Because of this Luxembourg have a perception of a very pollueted country and as it have no fresh air from the mountains as Switzerland and breeze from the sea as Sheychelles ,Malta ,those aspects are making a large number of investors to avoid the country because a big parte of investors want to invest spend time or live in cities ,regiions,places less pollueted possible
3) Luxembourg do not have enough geografic place and resources to receive a big number of tourists but despite of this in more than 20 years Mr Junker did not suceed to do what must be done in order to attract just very richies people , those who have money and disponibility to spend tem and some other who have great power in their society and country to influence strategics investors ,richies people and entrepreneurs
As when a country invest in tourism it creates jobs in construction ,transport ,fishing and food industries ,commerce ,service ,agriculture ,ecological industry ,new media ,real estate ,advertising ,artesanat ,art and entertainment and some other economics area which have link with those ,and mr Junker did not do what musted be done we can see the dimension of his incompetence and his magic ability to mske Luxembourg elector to vote him and leave with their eyes closed

international foundation for research and innovation  's picture

His ambition to candidate for an EU function it is demonstrating that he do not know how bad he had gouverned Luxembourg We beleave that to make him wake up we have to publish a big list of Luxembourg problems which are not solved because of his incompetence Taking into consideration that he do not have even strategic vision we are going to help him teling him that the centre right EU party is promoting Ms Viviane to a top EU function and as she have a good immage if in the same time somebody from Luxembourg who have a very bad immage will candidate it will anulate ms Viviane good immage and the advantages that she can bring to Luxembourg and his citizens Because of this for the benefit of the people and his citizens Mr prime minister must send him as a ambassador in Congo for example if he wants to escape the country from international damages immage

David Bennett's picture

Brussels will love him - "“When it becomes serious, you have to lie”"