European Parliament – another day, more elections…

Following on from the election of Martin Schulz to the Presidency of the European Parliament earlier this week, European Parliamentarians have been electing fourteen Vice–Presidents and five Quaestors.

Incumbent Vice-President, Edward McMillan-Scott (Liberal Democrat, Yorkshire and the Humber), having been elected last time as a member of the European People’s Party when the Conservatives were still members, was successfully re-elected as a member of the Alliance of Liberals and Democrats, meaning that the Liberal Democrats are directly represented on the Bureau, which is the administrative decision-making body in parliament dealing with issues such as buildings and MEPs’ expenses.

The full list of the new vice-presidents is;

  • Alexander Alvaro (Alliance of Liberals and Democrats, Germany)
  • Roberta Angalilli (European People’s Party, Italy)
  • Isabelle Durant (Greens/European Free Alliance, Belgium)
  • Othmar Karas (European People’s Party, Austria)
  • Edward McMillan-Scott (Alliance of Liberals and Democrats, UK)
  • Miguel Angel Martínez Martínez (Socialists & Democrats, Spain)
  • Georgios Papastamkos (European People’s Party, Greece)
  • Gianni Pittella (Socialists & Democrats, Italy)
  • Anni Podimata (Socialists & Democrats, Greece)
  • Jacek Prostasiewicz (European People’s Party, Poland)
  • László Surján (European People’s Party, Hungary)
  • Oldrich Vlasák (European Conservatives and Reformists), Czech Republic)
  • Alejo Vidal-Quadras (European People’s Party, Spain)
  • Rainer Wieland (European People’s Party, Germany)

Quaestors, who look after the financial and administrative interests of MEPs, were elected in the third ballot by a simple majority of the votes as follows;

  • Lidia Geringer de Oedenberg (Socialists & Democrats, Poland)
  • Jim Higgins (European People’s Party, Ireland)
  • Boguslaw Liberadzki (Socialists & Democrats, Poland)
  • Astrid Lulling (European People’s Party, Luxembourg)
  • Jirí Maštálka (United Left/Nordic Green Left, Czech Republic)

The only change was that Bill Newton Dunn, Liberal Democrat MEP for the East Midlands, who had been a quaestor since 2009, was replaced by Boguslaw Liberadzki.

The cumbersome process by which Vice-Presidents and Quaestors are elected was attacked by Andrew Duff (Liberal Democrat, East of England), who noted, “The spectacle of parliament spending nearly three days to fill up its own bureau is faintly ridiculous.”, and called for the introduction of STV for internal Parliamentary elections, stating that this would allow members to express their order of preference for candidates and would considerably speed up the election of the bureau. The current system requires MEPs to vote for or against a slate of candidates, and is seen as being inflexible.

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One Comment

  • Antony Hook 20th Jan '12 - 5:08pm

    Thanks Mark. Although this is par excellence a process story, we need more coverage of the Parliament, particularly the debates and decisions taken their to reconnect the public and Parliament. Article like this are a helpful contribution to that.

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