The Juncker Commission: what party balances?

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Series Details 23.10.14
Publication Date 23/10/2014
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The inauguration of the European Commission put together by Jean-Claude Juncker in the autumn of 2014 brings to a close a nomination process in the course of which the commissioners' party ties have played an important, though not an exclusive, role. Introduced by the innovative 'Spitzenkandidat' procedure, it is nevertheless balanced on fairly stable partisan grounds in comparison with the 'Barroso Commission'.

Here is the main conclusion made by our director Yves Bertoncini, in this NE-JDI Viewpoint based on three complementary statements:

1. The party affiliations of the Juncker Commission's members have played an ambiguous role in their appointment
2. The Juncker Commission's makeup reflects a stable balance of forces among the parties, despite the electoral rebalancing that has taken place since 2009
3. The Juncker Commission is going to have to act on the basis of variable-geometry political majorities both in the European Parliament and in the European Council

It appears that the Juncker Commission is going to have to rely on internal party balances comparable to those of the legislative term that has recently come to an end, but also to take into account the rebalancing that has occurred in the European Parliament and in the European Council. The fact that it must act in a very different economic, social and geopolitical context may also explain why it is likely to move toward political choices oscillating between continuity and a break with the past.

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Related Links
ESO: Background information: Towards the Juncker Commission
ESO: Background information: Parliament elects new European Commission

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