As reported here on Liberal Democrat Voice on Sunday, the election of a new President of the European Parliament took place yesterday and, as expected, Martin Schulz, from the German Social Democrats, was elected with a plurality of votes in the first round of voting. The result was as follows:
Martin Schulz 387 votes
Nirj Deva 142 votes
Diana Wallis 141 votes
Giving his acceptance speech to MEPs, Mr Schulz told MEPs: “Those who have voted for me can take pride in having done so. Those who didn’t vote for me will be pleasantly surprised.”. However, the result implies a degree of dissatisfaction with the cosy deal stitched up between the two largest Groups in the Parliament, the Socialists and Democrats, and the European People’s Party, as the other two candidates polled much better than the voting strengths of their Groups might have indicated.
In response to the result, Diana Wallis said in a message thanking her supporters;
“My candidacy was about enabling a stronger European Parliament so as to bring it closer to all Europeans through my Presidency. It was also about challenging the existing status quo among the leadership of the main political groups in the EP. I did not achieve these particular goals, but I did achieve a more open debate about them. On top of this I believe through my candidacy we achieved something extraordinary through the campaign media platforms: a real engagement with European citizens. The future relies on the EU citizens and their full engagement in the upcoming years. I continue to have a vision of Europe and particularly of a European Parliament that is much closer to the citizens of Europe. I will continue to do my utmost to promote that goal.”
* Mark Valladares is a member of ALDE Party Council and takes up his role as a member of the International Relations Committee on 1 January 2015