Barroso's report card: failed… at the September session

The headmaster in the person of Fredrik Reinfeldt, the Swedish Prime Minister, who is currently presiding over the European Union, gave his report card to
pupil Barroso: not enough to move on to the July session. But he is admitted to a remedial session in September…
In short, it's very academic.
what happened in recent days, after intense negotiations between Brussels and Stockholm as well as some European capitals.

Parliament's major opposition. After an interview with Nicolas Sarkozy (probably a coincidence -:)), the Swedish Prime Minister who wanted to
seeing the candidacy of Barroso endorsed (who promised the Swedes in return a position of importance) has come to the fore.
«We won't make a decision
on José Manuel Barroso in July but we hope that this decision will be taken later
».
The application ran the risk of not
pass the ramp to the European Parliament in July and it was better to postpone it.
Four political groups in Parliament – ​​left and center
(Communists, Socialists and Democrats, Greens, Liberals) - refused to have their hands twisted and to appoint the future President of the European Commission in July. The Greens led by Dany
Cohn-Bendit had given the first la.
By sounding a vigorous charge against the reappointment of the President of the European Commission in July and
against José-Manuel Barroso himself.
They had been followed by the Communists of the GUE, the Liberals led by Guy Verhofstadt and then the
Socialists and Democrats by Martin Schulz.

Support never formalized. The former Portuguese Prime Minister was nevertheless assured of the “unanimous” support of the 27 heads of state and government, acquired during the European summit in June.
But this support had not been formalized. For political reasons. Certain States and not the least (France, Germany and Belgium to a certain extent) not wishing it to be
so. But for legal reasons. Formalizing the appointment of the future president means formally starting the procedure for appointing the new European Commission. The only treaty
applicable being the Treaty of Nice, the Commission must have fewer members than member states. And therein lies the serious problem for the States which do not want (no longer want) this
provision which appears in the Treaty of Nice, was reinstated in the draft Constitutional Treaty and taken up, although limited in value, in the Treaty of Lisbon (with a postponement of the
5-year measure and the possibility left to the European Council to modulate – or cancel – this measure at any time. 

institutional error. We will not change José-Manuel Barroso. As in 2004, when he maintained against all odds the candidacy of
Buttiglione, the Italian Commissioner for Justice and Home Affairs who had made an unjustified statement on homosexuals, he did not really feel the
lines of force and rupture. Five years at the head of the Commission, and its president has still not understood that going by force, over the European Parliament, can have a boomerang effect.
When the assembly is in a position to increase its power, or in danger of seeing it diminish, there generally occurs an institutional reaction, more independent of the ties that one wants to make to it.
endorse. The MEPs – newly elected – not wanting to obey the finger on the seam of the pants, to political contingencies of their government.

The risk for Barroso. In doing so, and the Portuguese knows well the risk he is taking. To be postponed for three months decision, the possibility of being named becomes less certain. Other events that disrupt the situation may arise (in particular the worsening of the economic and social crisis or
terrorist acts) or, worse, another candidate. If no one has yet profiled themselves for the position, contrary to what everyone can say, the "good" candidates
potentials abound. It is enough that the race for candidacy is open. This is what just happened today...

Nicolas Gros Verheyde

Chief editor of the B2 site. Graduated in European law from the University of Paris I Pantheon Sorbonne and listener to the 65th session of the IHEDN (Institut des Hautes Etudes de la Défense Nationale. Journalist since 1989, founded B2 - Bruxelles2 in 2008. EU/NATO correspondent in Brussels for Sud-Ouest (previously West-France and France-Soir).