Macron Censures the Leyen for the Goulard fiasco
The EU Parliament is the French candidate for the Commission by a large majority fail. France’s President Macron reacts with disapproval – and has questions for the future Commission President.
He had discussed everything with Ursula von der Leyen, says Emmanuel Macron.
It is Thursday afternoon; French President has just been asked what he says about the rejection of his candidate for the European Commission. The MEPs had stopped Sylvie Goulard by a large majority. He must now understand how this could happen, says Macron on the sidelines of an event in Lyon.
He proposed three candidates for the Commission post from Leyen, Macron said. “President von der Leyen told me she wanted to work with Sylvie Goulard.” Macron continues, “I told President von der Leyen: Watch out!” He pointed it out to the investigation into the phoney employment affair.
Von der Leyen had told him that she had received approval for Goulard from the leaders of the European People’s Party, the Social Democrats and the Liberals, the three major groups in parliament.
And now that. The rejection with 82 of 112 votes. It is a clap for Goulard, a humiliation for Emmanuel Macron and in its effects a debacle that was difficult for the Leyen to grasp.
Not only the French President wants to know how it came about. “Rejecting Macron’s candidate is not the same as sending Victor Orbán’s husband home,” said an EU diplomat.
That sounds like trouble.
If you ask Daniel Caspary, head of the CDU and CSU MEPs, then it’s easy. “Parliament has woken up,” he says. “After Parliament was unable by its own power to enforce the lead candidate process, we have now shown that we can count on it.”
This is certainly part of the truth: The refusal Goulards is a settlement with Macron, at least by a large part of the EPP and the Social Democrats.
Rejection from every corner
Macron has shown time and again that he sees European parliamentarians more as a receiver of orders. When he made sure that none of the top candidates for the post of European Commission President came after the European elections, Macron moved to the continuing displeasure of many MPs.
Goulard’s financial affairs made it easy for parliamentarians to demonstrate. Misrepresentation affair, 350,000 euros from the think tank of the dazzling German-American billionaire Nicolas Berggruen, and then a resort in which Sylvie Goulard thousands of officials with sometimes completely different interests under one roof – at the hearings in the European Parliament are already candidates with less bulky Luggage failed.
In the end, the rejection of Goulard came from all corners: European People’s Party, Greens, Social Democrats, the Conservatives – all lowered de.