Blog AnalysisEuropean policy

Five years ago ! Three failed commissioners

(B2) It was 5 years ago… The Italian commissioner Rocco Buttillion candidate for the post of Justice makes an inappropriate statement about homosexuals. He doesn't really apologize.

The business is going up

Parliament wants another portfolio to be assigned to him. The Italian government refuses, despite José-Manuel Barroso's request. He tries to save the day by setting up a committee of commissioners around the Italian in charge of Fundamental Rights. Insufficient, and too late! It is the very change of the Italian commissioner that becomes necessary. And even more.

The kiss of death

As the hours pass, the Commission's dubbing seems to be compromised. In fact, it only hangs by a thread: the extreme right. MEP Jean-Claude Martinez (National Front) gave the kiss of death to the Commission by announcing that he would support it.

Three changes

At the last minute, José-Manuel Barroso withdrew the composition of the college and then reshuffled it. Franco Frattini replaces Buttiglione.

Another commissioner is changed. The Latvian Ingrida Udre – member of the Union of Greens and Peasants – did not show very strong European enthusiasm. In addition, she is involved in a case of illicit financing of her party. Supported above all by the Prime Minister, it has been weakened by the resignation of the government in the meantime. It was quickly replaced by Andris Piebalgs. Lhe Latvian government having been less stubborn (and smaller) than the Italian one. And the less publicized case.

As for the Hungarian commissioner Laszlo Kovacs, he did not convince in the Energy position and changed portfolio with the Latvian Andris Piebalgs, normally in charge of Taxation.

From this affair, we only remembered the “Buttiglione affair”. But the European Parliament had indeed sent three commissioners to 'kill'.

(Nicolas Gros-Verheyde)

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).