Published: Sat, July 13, 2019
Global News | By Blake Casey

Ursula von der Leyen: The Green Wave President?

Ursula von der Leyen: The Green Wave President?

The German defence minister has been on a charm offensive to win over European lawmakers after her name was put forward by EU leaders in a surprise announcement last Tuesday.

Ursula von der Leyen, the candidate for the presidency of the European Commission, is making her rounds through political groups in Brussels.

"I welcome the commitments, given by Mrs Von der Leyen, to complete and strengthen the Capital Markets Union, but for Irish consumers, now facing sky-high interest rates and spiralling insurance premiums, this is a very theoretical response", he said.

Von der Leyen is now holding discussions with all political families to convince the Parliament to back her appointment.

"Considering that climate and environment were key issues in the election campaign and top of voters' concerns, it is disappointing that we have ended up with a candidate who could not during public debates present her vision for a sustainable Europe". Her promises to fight climate change were not enough for Green deputies who vowed to vote against her.

The Dutch MEP Sophie in 't Veld asked whether she would be tougher in acting against violations of the rule of law and democracy than the outgoing commission, adding it was "remarkable" that Poland and Hungary had supported Von der Leyen's nomination.

Google Can't Quit Trying to Make New Social Networks
Why it matters: Google+ might have closed down, but it seems Google isn't giving up on creating a social media platform. After picking the interests, the app automatically recommends a series of local activities which is called " Loops ".

Ms von der Leyen said: "We absolutely know how crucial this nonexistent border for you is, and therefore having the backstop in the Brexit deal is precious, important and has to be defended".

A broad coalition of European Union legislators who were elected in May had wanted one of the lead candidates of the respective parliament groupings to take arguably the most important job at the Commission, which proposes and implements policy across the EU. We did not hear any concrete proposal, be it on rule of law or on climate.

Von der Leyen, a 60-year-old former gynaecologist and mother of seven, switched between English, French and German as she spoke in favour of enlarging the euro zone and the EU's open-border Schengen area, provided countries meet the criteria.

"We insist that the voters deserve a democratic and transparent process when it comes to the choice of Commission president".

While meeting with the free-market liberal group Renew Europe, she said it was a "brilliant idea" to hold a citizens dialogue about the future of Europe.

In a subsequent hearing on Wednesday, this time with the Greens group, UK MEP Molly Scott Cato said that although not all of von der Leyen's answers had been received "very warmly" during the hearing, she was "delighted to hear" von der Leyen express the hope that Brexit never happens, adding, "because I agree with you about that". But she needs more votes.

Like this: