ECR Group: Commission proposals on future of EU unwise

The ECR Group has criticised the Commissions’ roadmap on a follow up on the Conference on the future of Europe presented by Vice-Presidents Dubravka Šuica, Věra Jourová, and Maroš Šefčovič today.

The proposals are based on recommendations made during the European Citizens’ Panels, the National Citizens’ Panels and the Multilingual Digital Platform of the Conference.

“It is unwise that the Commission, which is supposed to be the guardian of the Treaties, overlooks the many weaknesses of this conference. The Conference was aimed at undermining the very structure of the European Union.”, ECR Co-Chairman Ryszard Legutko (Poland) commented.

“It should be clear to all concerned that the report is nothing more than a hodgepodge of proposals from randomly selected citizens and activists that are not in any way representative of the diversity of opinions held by the people of Europe”, fellow ECR Co-Chairman Raffaele Fitto (Italy) added.

Earlier, the ECR Group had highlighted the serious shortcomings of the Conference in terms of participation opportunities, legitimacy and transparency, for example in the formulation of conclusions, but also in financial terms. The Conservatives and Reformists therefore walked out of the conference in protest at the end of April. According to the Conservative MEPs, the agenda of giving Brussels more powers was ruthlessly enforced by the organisers, including a biased selection of citizen representatives and experts.

“The Commission is taking up the proposal to add participatory elements to our tried and tested representative democracy, on which our communities are based. This opens the door to activism of all kinds”, Prof Legutko said.

Harmful, short-term or ideological thinking could become the norm, giving way to a politics based purely on mood and sentiment. The legitimacy of political decisions as a whole would then be endangered”, Mr Fitto concluded.

The ECR Group now hopes that the proposals of the Parliament and the Commission will be brought back down to earth by the Council. Its criticism goes against calls for further centralisation and deeper integration, moving from unanimity to qualified majority voting in more areas, and building a European defence system independent of NATO structures.

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