This week, Macron thinks Mrs. Turnbull is delicious, Juncker’s MFF is ambitious, and in Parliament, Nigel’s anti-Belgian sentiment gets malicious.
Emmanuel Macron’s level of English is unrivalled compared to his presidential predecessors, but his high standards slipped during a visit to Australia when he called PM Malcolm Turnbull’s wife “delicious.”
Emmanuel Macron’s level of English is unrivalled in comparison to his presidential predecessors. But his high standards seemingly slipped during a visit to Australia.
— euronews (@euronews) May 3, 2018
Alice Workman said “you can take the man out of France…”
Macron just said he wanted to thank Malcolm Turnbull and his "delicious wife".
You can take the man out of France but…
— Alice Workman (@workmanalice) May 2, 2018
But while cartoonists couldn’t wait to mock him,
— Mark Knight (@Knightcartoons) May 3, 2018
Lucy Turnbull was apparently very flattered, saying she found the President’s compliment as charming as it was memorable.
.@TurnbullMalcolm on Macron's 'delicious wife' comment: Lucy was very flattered, she has asked me to say that she found the President's compliment as charming as it was memorable. It was a great visit – President Macron charmed Australia.
— Sky News Australia (@SkyNewsAust) May 3, 2018
What was even more amazing, according to Anna Caldwell was that the French president has a better sense of humour than Twitter, after the Telegraph portrayed him as amorous skunk, Pepe Le Pew.
— Anna Caldwell (@annacaldwell) May 3, 2018
David Caldicott reckons the Tele is just pissed off that Macron is more charming and globally influential than anything that can be produced from Australia.
Did I miss something, or is the Tele just pissed off that @EmmanuelMacron is more charming and globally influential than anything that can be produced from the ranks of #auspol?
If the point was to portray Australia as a xenophobic small town, well done-
Mission Accomplished pic.twitter.com/SQP7dtRZkr
— David Caldicott (@ACTINOSProject) May 3, 2018
Closer to home, it was time to sink our teeth into the Multiannual Financial Framework as Juncker presented his plans to the European Parliament.
Manfred Weber focused on the €700 million for Interrail passes for 18-year-olds, saying the initiative is “gathering speed.”
Great news! There are 700 Million euros for #Interrail passes for 18 year old Europeans foreseen within the @EU_commission’s #EUbudget proposal! This is a strong commitment to Europe’s youth. Happy, that our initiative is gathering speed. @EPPGroup @GOettingerEU #DiscoverEU
— Manfred Weber (@ManfredWeber) May 2, 2018
Simon Usherwood reminded us all that the first rule of MFF: No-one likes the initial Commission proposal.
1st rule of #MFF: No-one likes the initial COM proposal
(doesn't mean COM has handled presentation well today) https://t.co/HYjNaHQ9gf
— Simon Usherwood (@Usherwood) May 2, 2018
Martini Seltzermayr ran a poll asking which euphemism will be used to justify bunging 0.3% GDP in subsidies to wealthy landowners as part of CAP?
The winner? Don’t ask just send cash.
POLL: which euphemism will today be used to justify bunging 0.3% GDP in subsidies to wealthy landowners? #CAP
— Martini Seltzermayr (@mseltzermayr) May 2, 2018
The S&D’s Udo Bullmann said the budget was not enough to protect European workers, to support young people in their quest for a decent job, to help low-income families and to invest in growth and meet our environmental challenges.”
"No, it is not enough. It is not enough to protect European workers, to support young people in their quest for a decent job, to help low-income families and to invest in growth and meet our environmental challenges" – @UdoBullmann gives our response to #EUBudget in #EPlenary pic.twitter.com/Twhf9YiaT6
— S&D Group (@TheProgressives) May 2, 2018
Others were concerned that the overall size of the budget was too big. Danish PM Lars Løkke Rasmussen tweeted: “The Commission just presented a budget the size of 28 Member States. But we are only 27 Member States to finance it. A smaller EU should mean a smaller budget!”
— Lars Løkke Rasmussen (@larsloekke) May 2, 2018
Remember that ‘Big on the Big things, Small on the Small things’ thing? asked Berlaymonster. Turns out it’s not a sliding scale. You have to be a bit bigger on the slightly smaller things.
Remember that 'Big on the Big things, Small on the Small things' thing?
Turns out it's not a sliding scale between the two.
You have to be a bit bigger on the slightly smaller things. #mff
— Berlaymonster (@Berlaymonster) May 2, 2018
Adding that he had a “bad feeling inland waterways and catering would not come out well.”
— Berlaymonster (@Berlaymonster) May 2, 2018
EU Commissioner for Inland waterways and catering, Albert Kunarddocz, responded that they remain key priorities. “Modulated financing from #InvestEU and #CohesionPolicy in a holistic and joined up budget will ensure both continue to contribute to strong and sustainable EU growth.”
#Inlandwaterways and #catering remain key priorities for the coming #MFF. Modulated financing from #InvestEU and #CohesionPolicy in a holistic and #joinedup budget will ensure both continue to contribute to strong and sustainable EU growth. https://t.co/E4O1XbYJwp
— Albert Kuñardocz (@KunardoczEU) May 2, 2018
…which is certainly the most sensible thing we’ve heard about the MFF!
And finally, just when we thought we wouldn’t have a third topic for you this week, it was Nigel to the rescue…
By slagging off Belgium!
“Belgium is an artificial nation, it is not a nation, that’s why you want to sign up to a supranational level,” Farage told Belgian PM Charles Michel in Parliament. Adding the two communities “dislike themselves profoundly.”
"Belgium is an artificial nation, it is not a nation, that's why you want to sign up to a supranational level" says @Nigel_Farage to @CharlesMichel mentioning 2 communities who dislike themselves profoundly" pic.twitter.com/yAW2dmnfzC
— Jurek Kuczkiewicz (@jujikucz) May 3, 2018
…Says the man from a country cobbled together from different nations, speaking different languages, with different parliaments and likely to break up sooner than Belgium replied Gareth Harding
— Gareth Harding (@garethharding) May 3, 2018
Oliver Grimm added: There was a time when the United Kingdom was quite an artificial construct.
There was a time when the United Kingdom, well, even England, was quite an artificial construct. https://t.co/TY0t3c5vQl
— Oliver Grimm (@grimmse) May 3, 2018
Very happy to take advice from Nigel Farage, responded Charles Michel sarcastically. “Britain took his advice and look how well that is going.”
Very happy to take advice from Nigel Farage, says sarcastic Belgian PM Charles Michel, Britain took his advice and look how well that is going.
— James Crisp (@JamesCrisp6) May 3, 2018
And Guy Verhofstadt got to the heart of the matter saying Farage would see how real Belgium is when they play England in the World Cup!
Today, Nigel Farage said Belgium is not a real country. He’ll see how real Belgium is when we play England in the World Cup! But perhaps he’s still exploring German citizenship and will be rooting for “die Mannschaft” ? ?? ??????? ??
— Guy Verhofstadt (@guyverhofstadt) May 3, 2018
And that’s it for another week. Join me again next week for more slagging, bragging, and nagging in the Brussels Bubble Twittersphere.