The Presidency of the European Council

There has been a lot of talk lately about the collapse of the Tony Blair candidacy for President of the European Council (see Nosemonkey’s recent post for an explanation of all those councils!). I personally am thankful for that, but Blair is still holding out and hoping to get Angela Merkel’s backing for the post. I don’t see him getting the German Chancellors backing due to the whole Iraq War debacle.

So who will get it? Paddy Power have odds up for a few politicians and Jan Peter Balkenende, the Dutch Prime Minister, is currently favourite. While I think he would make a good Council President I think its time the EU stood up and appointed a woman to being the top post. With David Milliband looking likely as the Foreign Affairs portfolio, a female President would be excellent. (There is a twitter campaign for this by the way!) Paddy Power mention two women on their list, former Irish President, Mary Robinson and current Finnish President Tarja Halonen.

Mary Robinson has ruled herself out for the role, leaving Tarja Halonen the sole remaining mentioned female candidate. I am sure there are others. Julien Frisch has a post outlining why she could be a good President. She certainly has the experience!

So who will get it? If the Czech President Vaclav Klaus signs the Lisbon Treaty after the constitutional Court gives its verdict this week, there will be a special summit on the 11th and 12th of November to decide the names of those getting the new posts.

Who are you backing?

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Author: Stephen

Cork born and bred, proud European and Irishman. Involved in many organisations and politics. Also writes for and UCC Express.

6 thoughts on “The Presidency of the European Council”

  1. Why a female president? Why not somebody capable of the doing the job, regardless of sex. Why not a transsexual? Why not a heterosexual male? Why not a vegetarian? Why not an occult practitioner? Why not Sinead O’Connor? Why dont you go for the job?

    I personally think John Bruton is the best option.

  2. Why a female? because the EU has epousing equality since it was created. Its about time it acted on them in regards to its top appointments. Enough of the Old boys club.

    I don’t think John Bruton would make a good President of the European Council.

  3. Steve, espousing equality doesn’t necessitate giving a woman the job. I’m not opposed to the idea of course, but the EU should give the job to the most suitable person, male or female. And if they’re thinking “wait, we need a women in a top job to look like we love equality,” well that just stinks of tokenism.

  4. But Bryan, I think a woman would be far better suited to this role. Most men mentioned for the role would be very much of a “presidential” style of leadership while what this role needs is a chairmanship stlye. I think Tarja Halonen or Vaira Vike-Freiberga would be far better choices then any of the men mooted so far.

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