Via Stephen and EurActiv I became aware of the fact that discussions about replacing Barroso with Guy Verhofstadt are remaining alive, even after the EPP victory at the recent EP elections.
To make things clear: Guy Verhofstadt would by far be a better Commission President than Barroso!
First, he has more profile as a convinced European than Barroso, having proposed the creation of the United States of Europe and having been endorsed by European federalists.
And second, he has made himself a name in Europe as the leader of his country, as a visible statesman who is more than just a compromise candidate as Barroso was when proposed in 2004 and which he remains until today.
We need a person that can inspire Europe, a person that has the personality to stand against the overly powerful, intransparent Council, a convinced European who is electable but more than just a political trade-off.
As a member of ELDR/ALDE and if supported by the PES and the Greens, he would have a stronger voter basis than Barroso who is only endorsed by the EPP. The question will be how the many others on the far left (GUE/NGL), on the right (e.g. the newly formed group around the British Tories) and the many so far unaligned will behave.
This is pretty unclear by now, and I can only hope that somehow there will be a coalition of the Europeans willing to make a step to the front after these elections have been two steps backwards.
So I don't see yet that Verhofstadt will get a majority but it would be more than desirable to make him replace the unbearable José Manuel Barroso!
Update: Just saw that Jon also published an article on this topic some minutes ago.