Tweets of the Week: Selmayrgate, Manfred Weber, dancing Theresa May

This week, the Commission sticks to its Selmayrgate stance, Manfred Weber thinks he’s in with a chance and Theresa May is queen of the dance.

This week’s sponsor is the European Parliament’s S&D group. More about their activities at the end.

Kicking off the rentree with a bang, the European Ombudsman, Emily O’Reilly, issued her finding that the “fast track” appointment of Jean Claude Juncker’s right hand man, Martin Selmayr, to  Commission Secretary-General amounted to “maladministration”.

She said the Commission did not follow “the relevant rules correctly either in letter or in spirit.” 

Justin Stares summed it up saying “Brussels bureaucrat climbs greasy pole with help of important friends and a bit of rule-bending. Damp squib”

Telegraph reporter James Crisp was taking bets on how long the now-traditional grilling of the spokesperson would take: “I reckon 37 mins. Though some have suggested 58.”

Chief spokesman Margaritis Schinas gave the performance of his career, stating that despite the scathing report, the EU Ombudsman “doesn’t contest the legality” of Selmayr’s appointment.

Farting in a lift also remains legal noted Berlaymonster.

Yep, and they both stink!

Times journo Bruno Waterfield was more measured: I think it’s a pity, he said. Selmayr was once just what the Commission needed – a good brutal kick up its well upholstered arse.

But Alice Stollmeyer was right when she said the Commission has scored an own goal.

It’s stuff like this that led to Brexit!

Elsewhere, this week Manfred Weber threw his hat in the ring to be the next Commission President by formally announcing his hope to be the EPP Spitzenkandidat.

As if there’s not enough German influence… as Agence Europe’s cartoonist pointed out:

Captain Europe says with Manfred Weber becoming the main EPP candidate, the whole idea of Spitzenkandidat becomes officially a very bad idea.

A brief re-cap for those of you too young to remember, or have valiantly managed to blot out the whole Spitzenkandidat circus of five years ago: it’s the process whereby the European Parliament elections effectively become a horse-race for the Commission President as well, as the group with the most MEPs automatically gets their candidate appointed.

Former Finnish Prime Minister Alexander Stubb was also out and about playing nice with Brussels folk.

Leading Shane Heneghan to wonder whether Weber has competition for the EPP Spitzenkandidat nomination?

Yes Shane, he most definitely does!

Ryan Heath gave us a fun guide to the racers and riders for all the groups.

Meanwhile a lot of people pointed out that the whole process has one high-profile opponent in French President Emmanuel Macron.

But Dave Keating rode to Macron’s defence saying the reason he is so opposed to the Spitzenkandidat process is that it’s a stitch-up by design. Awarding the Commission presidency to the party that receives the highest number of votes guarantees an EPP centre-right presidency.

Personally I’m just hoping it’s not another middle-aged white guy! Hey, we can all dream!

And finally, Theresa May Dancing! Yes it was over a week ago, but we were on holiday and really, how could you not…?

The #TheresaMayDancing hashtag provoked joy and ridicule in equal amounts.

Chris Brookmyre said to give Theresa May some credit, she’s better at dancing than she is at just about everything else. Apart from deporting people for being the wrong colour, obviously. She’s shit-hot at that.

Rossanna Trudgian said: I’m no fan of Theresa May, her politics or her dancing skills, but hats off to her for getting stuck in! There would have been many PMs who would have felt as though they were above doing that. Now if she can just get stuck in to tackling child poverty…

And Sam Evans said bring on another few years of Theresa May’s dancing and curtsying  – just for the memes!

And the winner of Twitter this week? It’s gotta be the Theresa May – Mr Bean Dance Off

This week we are supported by the European Socialists and Democrats. They’re aiming to do more than just dance in Africa. Find our more about this year’s S&D Africa Week from 5th to 9th of November by following the hashtag #WithAfrica.

And that’s it for this week! Join me again for more thrills and spills in the Brussels Bubble Twittershpere.

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