Today, the European Parliament adopted the legislative initiative for the Election of the Members of the European Parliament by direct universal suffrage (Rapporteur Domenec Ruiz Devesa – S&D) by a narrow majority.
The proposal seeks to harmonise rules for the European elections and introduce transnational, pan-European lists, as a supplement to voting for national candidates. ECR shadow Rapporteur Angel Dzhambazki believes that the text of the proposal goes against the multinational character of the European elections and undermines the electoral competences of the Member States. Furthermore, in the plenary debate, Mr Dzhambazki underlined the fact that some parts of the proposals go against the treaties in a way that strips sovereignty from the Member States, potentially causing them to loose representation in the EU institutions.
“With the electoral law, you want to take sovereignty away from nation states and that goes against the Treaties. Electoral law must remain the prerogative of the European citizens and their respective governments,” Dzhambazki said.
From the outset, in the Committee of Constitutional affairs, the ECR Group was sceptical towards the relevance of this legislative initiative. In addition to the traditional election methods in Member States, the report proposes an EU-wide constituency, paired with a complicated system for geographical balance and establishes yet another European Authority, with the task of governing over the European Elections.
Initiated by the European Parliament, the legislative initiative needs to be adopted unanimously by the Council, obtain Parliament’s consent and receive the approval of all the Member States in accordance with their respective constitutional requirements (Art. 223 TFEU). The group of the European Conservatives and Reformists hopes that the file will be rejected by the Council, as it aims to further centralise Europe and diminish the competences and authority of the member states.
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