Wednesday 16 September 2009

The Barrosocracy

53% is the magic figure, 382 warm votes for the man running the European Union - a firm YES to the Barrosocracy.

Few of you reading this blog will have missed this moment today. A collective cry went through the Eurotwittersphere, and Stephen (spiller2) could not have been more right when he said:
"[Y]ou know your obessed with EU politics when your entire twitter stream is telling you the result of the Barroso vote!"
José Manuel Barroso has been re-elected, and received the absolute majority of votes of all members of the European Parliament, which had made him the Commission President even under the more rigid rules of Lisbon Treaty that has not yet entered into force.

Some are still saying that the 53% make him the weakest president in the history of the Commission, but for once I don't want to blow into this same horn. This 53% is nothing but a clear sign of the politicisation of the European Union and the European Parliament, which makes Barroso the president under the strongest European Parliament ever.

This tight vote shows that the election of Barroso was not the most obvious thing in the world - although the result was better than expected - but that with another result in the European Parliament elections his election could have been prevented.

I was among the supporters of Anyone but Barroso! and I stand to this opinion, because I am still convinced that his lack of charisma and his inability to stand against the negative forces of the member states were amongst the reasons that made that the European Union did not advance much over the last 5 years.

But now I can only wish luck and strength to Mr. Barroso, who has been proposed by 27 democratically elected governments and approved by an absolute majority of directly elected European parliamentarians, and is thus one of the most democratically legitimised political figures in the world.

After he got elected today, Barroso said that he wants to work more closely with the European Parliament to make the Union a "European parliamentary democracy".

If this is his firm intention, he deserves every support from us - even from those running against him until now - and if he really wants this help from our side he will get it for sure.

But we will hold him responsible for these words over every minute of his term - hopeful that after five more years we might be able to say that second five years of the Barrosocracy were far better than the first.

On the same topic: E.g. Publius, Coulisses de Bruxelles, Gulf Stream Blues, Cecilia Malmström, euenvironmentblog, La Oreja de Europa, Silvana Koch-Mehrin, The Lobby, FT Brussels Blog, Cédric Puisney, Marie Ramot, Francesco Molica, Brussels Blogger, EU Referendum, European Union Law, Global Europe, ResEuropa, Charlemagne, Eva en Europa, Glennis Willmott, Grahnlaw, Public Affairs 2.0, Hökmark, Europe Sociale, Petra Sorge, Europabloggen, Eurocrat, eurosocialist, El mundo desencajado, L'Europe en Blogs, Géopolitique, Jochen Bittner.


Ralf Grahn said...


Where did you find the quote that Barroso wants to make the European Union a parliamentary democracy?

This would be revolutionary; in comparison his political programme is bland.

If Barroso has said that and if he means it, he would have to propose major amendments to the treaties (leading to a Convention).

Julien Frisch said...

I have heard the quote live in his speech, but could not find it to double-check since nowhere the full speech has been published so far... said...

Politicians say too many things...

Ralf Grahn said...


Yes, I checked the recorded extract from Barroso's press conference, without finding anything, but if you compare with his political programme, the quote sounds less than plausible.

Perhaps you should be aware of the fact that I have published a post on my own blog.

Lighthouse said...

Barroso wants to make the European Union a parliamentary democracy?


An EU as a parliamentary democracy without any Commission

Barroso apparently on his way over here to Ireland to support a yes vote re Lisbon Treaty.

Fun times ahead?

PS saw your good entry as I think I said on Commissioner Piebalgs blog re his light bulb ban that he defends