Photo  Copyright © EP European Union  Parliament

Photo  Copyright © EP European Union  Parliament

Photo  Copyright © EP European Union  Parliament

While restating the priority of the Transatlantic alliance, Ursula von der Leyen outlined what EU new course of foreign policy would be.

I believe Europe should have a stronger and more united voice in the world and it needs to act fast. That’s why we should have the courage to take foreign policy decisions by qualified majority and to stand united behind them. The cornerstone of our collective defence will always be NATO. We will stay transatlantic, and we have to become more European, that’s why we created the European defence community. Our work for a European Community of security and defence is a comprehensive security. Stabilisation always comes with diplomacy reconciliation and reconstruction”

"The European Union needs human borders, we must save, but saving alone is not enough: we must reduce irregular migration, we must fight murderers, traffickers and organised crime, we must preserve the right to asylum and improve the situation of refugees, for example through humanitarian corridors in close cooperation with UNHCR. We need empathy and decisive action. I am aware of how difficult and divisive discussions on this issues are. We need to address the legitimate concerns of many and look at how we can overcome our differences. I will propose a new pact on migration and asylum including the relaunch of the Dublin reform, this will allow us the return to a fully functioning Schengen area of free movement, the key driver of our prosperity, security and freedoms"

"First: I want the EU citizens to have their say at the conference on the future of Europe to start in 2020 and to run for two years. Second: I want us to work together to improve the spitzenkandidat system; we need to make it more visible to a wider electorate and we need to address the issue of transnational lists at EU election as a complementary tool of European democracy. Third:Yes I support a right of initiative for the European Parliament. When this house acting by majority of its members adopts a resolution requesting the Commission to submit legislative proposals, I commit to responding with a legislative act for respect of the proportionality, subsidiarity and better lawmaking principles. I am convinced that our stronger partnership will further help to make our people voices heard".

Ursula von der Leyen speaks for a Commission
closer to the Parliament 

Brussels, 16 July 2019 - ‘Non elected bureaucrats’: this has been the main accuse to EU commissioners over the last few years, and the discrediting definition was not only coming from the radical fanatics of Brexit. Now, new elected president of the EU Commission Ursula von der Leyen decided with charismatic diplomacy to communicate, to us all, that the Commission will be the best collaborative partner of elected MEPs envisaging a renewed ‘partnership’ walking step by step in unison to deliver a functioning legislation process for “better lawmaking principles”.

“Yes I support a right of initiative for the European Parliament. When this house, acting by majority of its members, adopts a resolution requesting the Commission to submit legislative proposals, I commit to responding with a legislative act for respect of the proportionality, subsidiarity and better lawmaking principles. I am convinced that our stronger partnership will further help to make our people voices heard" she said in her speech before being designated by a slight majority.

Prevaricative powers of Council and Commission over the Parliament have always been the sub-narrative fuelling euroscepticism. Brussels now shows to have learnt the lesson, at least on the external communications front; but even if this rebalancing of institutional powers was strategic comms only and a way to win MEPs votes, that would be anyway a huge step forward as, evidently, von der Leyen has not spoken for herself only: Tusk’s endorsement, Verhofvstadt enthusiastic applause, the full backing of Greens and Renew Europe, gave us the extent of a concerted support to this enlightened reformism coming from within the steel and glass palaces of the Union.

This moderate ‘âge de la raison’ gives hopes to outsiders such as the transnational lists for EU elections supporters as well as to the “legitimate concerns of many” over migration issues. An inclusive perspective which left her win the presidency by nine votes only, but as she said “a majority is a majority”. Maybe the 22 who abstained and the nearly half (327) who voted against her are radical (whether right or left sided) or, as PPE clearly demonstrates, stuck into more traditional group/party- power politics but, apparently, you do not reform the Union through radicalism or party politics when it comes to being able to tackle divisive populism, growing poverty, unregulated private sector, defection from nuclear treaties, resurgent Russia, expanding China, war-torn Africa and unpredictable ‘Trumps’.

Justine de Braeme

@TalkeuropeTweet

A bit of hope to everyone: welcome to l'âge de la raison

of the new EU Commission

Copyright © TalkEurope.org 2019 

Copyright © TalkEurope.org 2019 

@TalkEuropeTweet