Manfred Weber, Chairman of the Conservative European People’s Party (EPP) Group and the Group’s Spitzenkandidat for Commission President in the European elections in 2019, announced that he is not going to run to become the […]
The attack on Dutch journalist Willem Groeneveld is the second one in a short period of time. Over the past years, an increasing number of institutions and individuals have started to ring the alarm regarding the deteriorating state of press freedom in eastern European countries such as Hungary and Poland, and rightfully so. However, an increasingly unsteady media climate is a problem that also impacts Western European countries.
In response to Hungary’s recently introduced anti-LGTBTQ+ law which prohibits the representation of LGBTQ+ content in education and TV shows for under-18s, Dutch Prime Minister Mark Rutte on Thursday asked Hungary to leave the EU, or start respecting LGBTQ+ rights. Standing up for the rights of the LGBTQ+ community which is discriminated and increasingly suppressed by Hungary’s homophobic policies, Rutte made a bold statement declaring his aim was “to bring Hungary to its knees on this issue”. Hungary has been the EU’s black sheep for quite a while now, most prominently because of its democratic backsliding which has resulted in concerns about the country’s rule of law.
No English for me please! So says France in laying out their plans for their upcoming stint in the ever-rotating Presidency of the European Council. In the wake of the United Kingdom’s torturously prolonged exit from the EU, France has made it clear that it intends to stem the proliferation of English as the de-facto language of the European Union’s inner workings.
You may not have noticed, but the EU and its foreign policy have received rather a lot of attention lately. Why? Well, mainly because it doesn’t really have a foreign policy. Instead, it has twenty-seven different foreign policies that all need to be coordinated. Exactly that has been pretty problematic lately, leading some to argue for reform.
Members of the European Parliament are threatening to take the European Commission to court with an article 265 procedure regarding a long expected mechanism that is supposed to link EU funds to the rule of law.
‘The Left in the European Parliament’ (or short GUE/NGL for ‘Gauche Unitaire Européenne/Nordic Green Left’), is the smallest group in the European Parliament with 39 MEPs from thirteen Member States. As their name already suggests, they see themselves as the political representation of workers, trade unions and social movements with their main goal being to create ‘a social EU’.
The European People’s Party (EPP) is a centre-right political group of the European Parliament. It comprises politicians of Christian-democratic, conservative and liberal-conservative alignment. The EPP was officially founded in 1976 and, with time, acquired ever more importance in the EU. It has been one of the most influential parties within the Union’s institutions for many years. In fact, it holds the record of being the largest party in the European Parliament since 1999, in the European Council since 2002, and it is the most prominent party group in the current European Commission.
Our fifth European political group under scrutiny this week is actually the fifth largest group in the European Parliament with 73 seats together. The Green/EFA, where EFA stands for European Free Alliance, is a partnership between green parties and regionalist parties in Europe.
For the group, a ‘united Europe’ has historically fostered ‘peace, prosperity and security in our globalised world’. But today that hardly built democracy is said to be threatened by multinational companies. This look back at history and at present challenges helps to understand the Green/EFA answer to today’s challenges, a “solid basis for European democracy”. In other words, the vision of the future of Europe for the Green/EFA is that of a federal Europe and for that dream to come true the group argues for some important institutional changes.
The Socialists & Democrats (S&D) are the second largest group in the European Parliament with 146 seats in total. The group mainly consists of national pro-EU social-democratic parties and is associated with the EU-wide Party of European Socialists (PES). The group has always been one of the more enthusiastic groups of the EP on the topic of European integration so let’s find out what the EU should look like according to the S&D.