European elections for the 751-seat parliament are to be held on May 23-26. Nine different political alliances will contest Europe’s parliamentary elections in 2019.
The new presidents of European Parliament, European Council and European Commission will be elected in the vote.
The Spitzenkandidat process was implemented after the last European Parliament elections. Through the process, the candidate nominated by the most-rated political group in parliament was elected to the EU Commission president.
However, it is still being discussed whether the same process will be implemented after these elections. Germany supports the process while France and Luxembourg oppose it.
After the elections, the EU leaders are expected to meet on May 28 to decide whether the same process will be implemented.
1. Dutch Frans Timmermans, vice president of the European Commission since November 2014, is lead candidate of the Progressive Alliance of Socialists and Democrats (S&D).
The 58-year-old politician served as EU minister for his country in 2007-2010. He also served as foreign minister from 2012-2014.
2. Germany’s Manfred Weber is lead candidate for the European People’s Party (EPP). He is known for his hard-line immigration policy and opposition to Turkey’s EU accession.
3. Alliance of Conservatives and Reformists in Europe (ECR) nominated Czech-origin Jan Zahradil. He was elected in 2004 as MP to European Parliament. He supports the idea of a more “elastic” EU.
4. Alliance of Liberals and Democrats in Europe (ALDE) nominated seven candidates instead of one lead. Guy Verhofstadt, who is seen one step ahead of others, was prime minister of Belgium from 1999 to 2008.
Guy Verhofstadt, Margrethe Vestager, Nicola Beer, Katalin Cseh, Luis Garicano, Emma Bonino and Violeta Bulc were nominated by ALDE.
5. German national Ska Keller and Dutch Bas Eickhout were nominated as candidates by The European Green Party (EGP). Keller, one of the youngest candidates in elections, was educated on Islam and Turkology.
Other groups are the European United Left/Nordic Green Left (6), European Greens/ European Free Alliance (7), Europe of Freedom and Direct Democracy (8) and Europe of Nations and Freedom (9).
It is not clear yet which groups French President Emmanuel Macron and Hungarian PM Viktor Orban supported in the elections.
Anadolu Agency / ABC Flash Point EU News 2019.