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Von der Leyen’s biggest challenge will be to get a majority in Parliament

All polls point to a new victory for the center-right family at European level, ahead of the European socialists, whose candidate is the Luxembourger Nicolas Schmit.

Designated as a favorite for the race for the presidency of the European Commission, Ursula von der Leyen faces a difficult path until her eventual (re)election in the European Parliament, where she needs to guarantee a majority that is far from assured.

Less than a month before the European elections, which will be held in the 27 Member States of the Union between June 6 and 9, the official “main candidate” (spitzenkandidat) of the European People’s Party (EPP), is capable of obtaining a second term.

All the polls point to a new victory for the center-right family at European level, ahead of the The European socialists, whose candidate is the Luxembourger Nicolas Schmit.

However, even if the EPP’s announced victory is confirmed, Von der Leyen will have to guarantee a (simple) majority in the “new” European Parliament resulting from the elections, which is expected to be much more fragmented and with a reinforced presence of the extreme right.

The recent “openness” expressed by the German political leader to a possible collaboration with the Group of Conservatives and Reformists (ECR), which includes radical parties such as Vox (Spain), Law and Justice (PiS, Poland), Reconquista (France) and The Brothers of Italy sounded the alarm in center-left European political families.

Socialists, liberals, Greens and the European left have already warned that they will not support his re-candidacy if there is some type of alliance with the radical right, which would make his election unviable.

In July 2019, Ursula von der Leyen, even with the support of the three majority groups in the European Parliament after the elections in May of that year (EPP, Socialists and Liberals), only managed to win the elections by a margin of nine votes. Of 733 cast, she obtained 383 votes in favor, 327 against, 22 abstentions and one null vote.

Ironically, Von der Leyen only managed to be elected thanks to the votes in favor of numerous deputies from the Polish party PiS (then in power) and Fidesz, from Hungarian Prime Minister Viktor Orbán, something that will surely not happen again, after, In the last legislature, the Commission advanced infringement proceedings for violations of the rule of law in both countries.

This year, and if designated by the European Council, Ursula von der Leyen faces an apparently even more demanding mission to guarantee the necessary majority in Parliament, that is, half plus one of the votes cast (361).

He ruled out any cooperation with the Identity and Democracy (ID) group, which includes, among others, far-right forces such as the Alternative for Germany (AfD), Matteo Salvini’s League (Italy), and the National Navy Rally. Le Pen (France)

But in a debate between spitzenkandidaten held at the end of April, however, did not reject collaborating with Esquerra, responding that “a lot depends on the composition of Parliament and who is in each group.”

Socialists, liberals and greens have already announced that they will not vote against the re-election of the German leader if she does not outright reject collaboration with Esquerra.

According to the EU Treaties, in the event that the name proposed by the Council for President of the Commission does not reach the necessary majority in the European Parliament – something that has never happened to date – the Heads of State and Government of The 27 will have a period of one month to present a new candidate.

With the constituent session of the new assembly scheduled for July 16 to 19, the election of the president of the European Commission is expected to take place in the first plenary session of the European Parliament after the summer holidays, between July 16 and 19. September.

Source: Observadora

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