EU MONITOR: The Original Sins of the new European Commission

This EU Monitor was written by our associated research fellow Piotr Maciej Kaczyński. He tackles the increased political confrontation in the European political arena.

  • There are signals of increased political confrontation in the European political arena. The new European Commission has not yet taken office and already has two big political problems awaiting it: how to deal with the democratisation of the Union and how to address the Euroskeptic support for the Commission in the eyes of the pro-European forces.
  • We call them “the original sins” of the new Commission, but in fact they may mean that if the Juncker Commission was a political one, the von der Leyen Commission might be the most political commission in the history of the institution.

The first of the original sins is the issue of Spitzenkandidaten process. Criticized as unrealistic and unnecessary before the elections, is now revered among those who care for the European democracy. Some claim the process is dead; I’d argue it will bounce back stronger during the next cycle. The reason being – it is an original sin of the von der Leyen European Commission.

The second original sin comes from the fact that the new Commission President dwells on the support of the Euro-sceptics and Euro-realists and failed to gain meaningful levels of trust of the pro-European majority in the House of the People, as the European Parliament is called. The pro-European President of the Commission needs to prove herself to the pro-European parliamentarians in the months and years to come.

The full policy paper is available through the PDF button.

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Piotr Maciej Kaczyński
Associate Research Fellow

EU institutional and political affairs, European domestic and foreign policies, Polish foreign policy

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