European Commission presidential hopeful to address Dublin rally
European Parliament president Martin Schulz hopes to woo Labour party gathering
Martin Schulz of Germany is the chosen candidate of the Socialist and Democratic group, the umbrella group for centre-left political parties in the European Parliament. Photograph: Reuters
Mr Schulz, who is currently the president of the European Parliament, is the chosen candidate of the Socialist and Democratic (S&D) group to become European Commission president should the S&D win the most seats in next month’s European elections.
This year for the first time, the European Parliament is advocating a system by which EU member states must take account of the results of the European elections when selecting the next president of the European Commission, citing an article in the Lisbon Treaty.
Schulz, has been selected as the S&D’s candidate, while former Luxembourg prime minister Jean-Claude Juncker was chosen as the European People’s Party (EPP) candidate last month at the centre-right group meeting in Dublin.
Former Belgian prime minister Guy Verhofstadt is representing the liberal group Alde, while the Greens have proposed two candidates, Ska Keller and José Bové. A number of EU member states, including Britain and Germany, oppose the idea that the European Parliament should have a direct say in who should succeed José Manuel Barroso as president of the European Commission, arguably the EU’s most important job. Ireland is one of 16 countries Schulz will visit before next month’s elections, though the British Labour Party urged him not to campaign there.