Europe tweets reaction to Obama win
EU Commissioners, politicians and diplomats have been competing on Twitter to deliver short and snappy messages on the future of EU-US relations, after Barack Obama was re-elected to serve a second four-year mandate in the US.
The first mover among EU leaders was Belgian Prime Minister Elio Di Rupo, who tweeted his warmest congratulations to Obama at 06.00 Brussels time.
Two hours later, he posted in French and Dutch, that “the Americans have opted for a more fair and more tolerant America,” he wrote.
Alexander Stubb, Finland's Foreign Minister and a Twitter addict, wrote on his account from South Africa: “Woke up at 06.15 South African time. CNN projects Obama victory 06.18. Good morning world! Congratulations democracy.”
Solana: EU-US 'Policy stimulus'
Javier Solana, the former High Representative for Foreign Policy, who has developed a taste for Twitter in his retirement, wrote a quick post: "Congratulations to my many friends in US!"
Solana added: "The winner is the policy of stimulus against the austerity. US versus EU?”
Political bias was visible now and then, but was not a constant. Nadine Morano, France's former minister for Apprenticeship and Professional Formation under Nicolas Sarkozy, and a twitter freak, seized the opportunity to slam his socialist successor François Hollande.
“Obama reaches out to Romney in the name of national interest. Not like that sectarian and discourteous Hollande who turned his back to Sarkozy,” Morano wrote.
Commissioners' wishes on twitter
There was no partisanship in the tweets of EU Commissioners, many of whom extended their congratulations to Obama.
“Four more years! Congratulations to president Obama!,” tweeted EU Home Affairs Commissioner Cecilia Malmström, who belongs to the liberal ALDE political group.
“Happy to see Barack Obama reelected! US political energy, high election turnout admirable. Strong mandate for 2nd term,” was the sally of Maroš Šefčovič, Vice-President of the European Commission in charge of inter-institutional relations and administration.
A former diplomat, Šefčovič revealed his Socialist political affiliation when he became Commissioner. He also tweeted congratulations in his native Slovak language.
Internal market Commissioner Michel Barnier, EPP affiliated, sent regards in his native French: “Good luck to President Obama! What a great country when it is at the service of a more just world!”
Antonio Tajani, Vice President of the European Commission responsible for Industry and Entrepreneurship from Berlusconi’s People of Freedom party, tweeted: “Congratulations to president Obama. Now we need more Europe for a good link with USA.”
Both Climate Action Commissioner Connie Hedegard and Humanitarian Aid Commissioner Kristalina Georgieva tapped messages of support for EU-US action to deal with the climate change challenge.
“Congratulations Mr. Obama! Don't forget climate change this time. We need strong US involvement,” tweeted Hedegard, a Danish conservative.
“Congratulations Barack Obama - more hopeful today the world will fight climate change,” wrote Georgieva, a former World Bank Vice President who took office after a proposal by the Bulgarian EPP-affiliated Prime Minister.
Commissioner Androulla Vassiliou, a Cypriot liberal, responsible for education, culture, multilingualism and youth, tweeted: “Bravo America! Wonderful to feel that the voters trust in you, and despite all the difficulties, I believe that you can make your dreams true”.
Diplomats in Brussels and Washington
The chief diplomats representing the US in Brussels, and the EU in Washington also expressed themselves on twitter.
US Ambassdor to the EU William Kennard, who is a political appointee of Barack Obama tweeted: “Delighted we’ve reelected my good friend Barack Obama to 2nd term. Good news for US, Europe and the world”.
João Vale de Almeida, the Head of the EU delegation to the US, who could also be seen as a ‘political appointee” as he was Chief of cabinet to his compatriot José Manuel Barroso, reciprocated:
“Long election day and night almost over. Congratulations President Obama! EU ready to continue solid cooperation on common agenda.”
US President Barack Obama clinched a second term on 7 November, defeating his Republican challenger Mitt Romney.
Before he made his acceptance speech, Obama’s official Twitter account quickly posted: “This happened because of you. Thank you.”
Obama is expected to continue putting pressure on Europe to solve the eurozone crisis which has also hurt the US economy and given a new impetus to EU-US trade relations.
>> Read: Obama II and Europe