February 12, 2015
Tension is growing inside the EPP group of the European Parliament. Half of the German delegation (17 MEPs) signed a petition in January, supporting an inquiry committee on Luxleaks. This was considered a profound betrayal by other MEPs from the center-right group.
“This vote has undermined the authority of the first president of the Commission that has been elected, it’s not understandable,” said an MEP. President Jean-Claude Juncker doesn’t liked the signatures story either. He complained about it to Angela Merkel, who is said to have yelled at Manfred Weber, the German president of the EPP group in the European Parliament.
Juncker’s legitimacy is now being questioned. A few MEPs have withdrawn their signatures since, and Parliament has closed the inquiry committee issue. But scars remain. For the first time since the new Parliament was elected, EPP MEPs started voting all over the place during the February session. A proposal for new legislation on meat products got a huge majority of 460 votes, even though the EPP group had decided to vote against it. As unity is cracking inside the EPP, their partners inside the coalition might also think twice when asked for support.
Photograph courtesy of the EPP. Published under a Creative Commons license.Heard in Europe