I was giving out during the election campaign that the PES didnt have a candidate for Commission President. Despite the fact the PES President Poul Nyrup Rasmussen wants the job, its looking highly unlikely that he will not be the PES nominee.
Instead the Greens, ALDE and PES look set to team up to try and get former Belgian Prime Minister Guy Verhofstadt elected as Commission President according to euractiv.com instead of José Manuel Barroso. Verhofstadt’s party the Vlaamse Liberalen en Democraten (Flemish Liberals and Democrats) is part of the ALDE and looks set to be the their nominee.
This makes things interesting as the Commission President has to be elected by the European Parliament in a secret ballot. A combined vote of the PES, Green and ALDE grouping would be 294 votes, which is short of a majority.
Of course the ALDE is itself divided on the nomination as it is a small group it cannot hope to hold Commission President and Presidency of the European Parliament, which its leader Graham Watson wants.
Shuttle diplomacy is underway across European capitals to try and get support for nominations of both candidates, but it dosent look like Barroso’s re-election is assured as it was.
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