The new 'College' of European Commissioners was approved by the European Parliament today (1), thanks to the support of Conservatives, Socialists and Liberals. Daniel Cohn-Bendit, Co-President of the Greens/EFA Group - which voted against - commented:
"The new Barroso Commission has been approved by a coalition of hypocrites in the European Parliament. Socialists and Liberals played the charade of criticising the Commission and then voted in favour. The big political groups claim to support Barroso but they couldn't agree on a resolution because in truth they only support their own political factions. Barroso promises a Commission that will be more than the sum of its parts, but there are too many zeros to expect something truly positive.
We are faced with a Commission that has no vision and no determination. The Commission has failed to take initiative when and where it is needed most in Greece and Spain to name but two examples. This European Commission is not up to the challenges of the converging economic, social and environmental crises. It will not give Europe the basis to be a player on the world stage."
Greens/EFA Co-President Rebecca Harms commented:
"Barroso has shaped this Commission with the philosophy of divide and conquer. He assigned portfolios without respect to the prospective Commissioners' competences. Worse still, he moved Commissioners from posts where they were doing a good job. The new College of Commissioners risks being characterised by internal power struggles instead of teamwork due to the unclear division of responsibilities. All this is designed to strengthen Barroso's personal position a bad start when common EU action is needed to tackle the crisis.
The EU's Member States have also had a hand in the weakness of this Commission. Far too many of national government nominations were made on the basis of domestic political manoeuvres instead of finding the best possible candidate for Europe."
(1) 488 votes in favour, 137 votes against, 72 abstentions
See the Greens/EFA resolution on the new Commission:
Find further reaction from Green MEPs on the new Commission here: