Monday, 19 September 2011

A Well Placed German

German MEP Martin Schulz has confirmed he will seek to become parliament's next president.

It comes after the Socialist and Democrat group in parliament unanimously backed Schulz as its candidate for the presidency at a meeting on Thursday.

He is expected to take over as president from Polish MEP Jerzy Buzek after parliament votes on the presidency on 17 January 2012.

EPP leader Joseph Daul recently also gave his blessing to the deal, saying he regarded Schulz's presidency as "almost automatic".

Schulz, a veteran deputy, will be seen by some as a controversial choice as president. He was famously likened to a "Nazi commandant" by Italian prime minister Silvio Berlusconi during a debate in parliament.

The agreement between parliament's two biggest groups, the S&D and the EPP, to split the presidency over the current mandate has been criticised by other groups, including ALDE and the Greens.
ALDE deputy Sarah Ludford recently told this website that the "stitch-up" between the two groups was undemocratic.

UKIP leader Nigel Farage said, "The snarling angry face of Martin Schulz as European parliament president will be good for the eurosceptic cause."

Marta Andreasen, another UKIP member, said, "Shultz is known for his intolerance and often derisory language to all those that don't share his views."


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