RTVS | Does von der Leyen have a clear opponent after the Spitzenkandidaten debate?

Five candidates for the post of European Commission chief clashed in a Europe-wide debate on Thursday. Two factions did not field a candidate. The system of spitzenkandidaten, i.e. the leading candidates of each group for the post of president of the European executive, was created as an effort by MEPs to increase transparency in the filling of the highest posts in the European Union, which clearly includes the president of the Commission. Who will be the one who will form the majority after the elections and does the current head of the Commission, Ursula von der Leyen, have a significant opponent among the other spitzenkandidaten? Viktor Daněk, deputy director of EUROPEUM Institute, analysed the debate for RTVS.

Of the candidates mentioned, she is clearly the favourite. She has a very strong position, having already been at the head of the European executive and having led the Union through crises such as Covid, the war in Ukraine or the end of Brexit, so she has a clear track record of success. She also has the support of those who matter, which at the moment is not only the voters at the ballot box, but also the prime ministers and heads of government of the Member States, who will decide who they nominate at the nomination summit just after the elections. But it is not that the parliament is irrelevant, they have to take into account the results of the elections. If, as expected, the People's Party wins, then Ursula von der Leyen has a good chance of being nominated.

You can listen to the full interview from 00:12 here.

#Debate #European Commission #Spitzencandidate

Viktor Daněk
Deputy Director

Before entering the NGO sphere, Viktor Daněk worked for almost ten years as a journalist. During his time with the public service Czech radio, he focused mainly on covering EU affairs. He spent almost five years as a permanent correspondent in Brussels, where he cooperated with other media outlets. Before his career in journalism, he gained experience in the area of marketing and communication in the Česká spořitelna banking group and at the Czech Technical University in Prague. He holds university degrees in Media Studies and International Relations. Viktor Daněk joined the EUROPEUM Institute for European Policy in October 2023. He continues to be active in the media as a freelancer. His main areas of interest are institutional questions of European integration, globalisation and the EU’s climate and migration policy.

Related articles

EUROPEUM Institute for European Policy
Staroměstské náměstí 4/1
Prague 1 - Staré Město
110 00

tel.: +420 212 246 552
email: europeum@europeum.org