This Time is Different? How the euro crisis will impact on the European Elections

Tony Connelly, RTE (Ireland), 20.05.2014

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This week’s European elections are taking place amid unprecedented uncertainty over the European project.

The electorate is in a sour mood, the mainstream parties are fearful, and pro Europeans fear that a surge in support for the extreme right and eurosceptic parties will lead to Tea Party-style politics, and ultimately gridlock, in the next legislature, further damaging the reputation of the assembly. [...]

Their interpretation is that EU capitals only have to take into account the election results as part of the entire allocation of top jobs, ie the Commission president, the president of the European Council (currently Herman Van Rompuy), the EU foreign policy high representative, and the president of the parliament.

“There are two different interpretations,” notes Janis Emmanouilidis, director of studies at the European Policy Centre (EPC), a Brussels think tank. “We shall see which of them will prevail, what kind of compromise will be found, and whether there will be an institutional battle between the European Parliament and the heads of state and government.” [...]

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