The digital revolution is irreversibly changing the way we live, but also the way we interact with political and financial institutions which, in turn, have a huge level of control over our lives. Political institutions shape the laws that we need to follow, while financial institutions control the credit and the money without which we are stuck. At VoteWatch Europe we use information technology to empower citizens politically, by providing the tools to scrutinise how our representatives make EU policies on our behalf. Continue Reading
During the 2017 Presidential and Legislative elections in France, much attention was payed to the work of some of the candidates in the European Parliament. The most prominent, Jean-Luc Mélenchon and Marine Le Pen, ran for the Presidency of the Republic.
In this electoral context, some candidates used manipulative sources to praise their own work in the EP, a trick spotted and addressed promptly by the media. Continue Reading
Anneleen Van Bossuyt, Member of the European Parliament and a rising star in the Belgian New Flemish Alliance, is the new Chair of the Committee on the Internal Market and Consumer Protection (IMCO). Our analysis of her political record indicates that she is well-positioned to recover some of the influence lost by the ECR group due to the Brexit process. Continue Reading
The future of many EU policies largely depends on the outcome of German election in September. Indeed, the potential end of the grand coalition, made up of the Christian Democratic Union and the Social Democrats, could alter the position of Berlin on issues such as the EU defence policy and the future of the Eurozone.
According to its supporters, the grand coalition brought harmony and balance to German politics. Continue Reading
The EU and UK have just started negotiating the Brexit deal, but the future status of the EU-UK relations is more uncertain than ever. Theresa May’s bid to increase her majority in the Parliament by calling snap elections backfired. Political uncertainty is shared by continental Europe, as Member States struggle to find a common direction to the future of the Union. Continue Reading
VoteWatch Europe combined its political expertise with its dataset on the voting records in the EP to analyse how Belgian European Parliamentarians positioned themselves on several economic and social issues, ranging from the introduction of a European minimum wage to the establishment of an Eurozone budget. This report was commissioned by the Belgian Confederation of Christian Trade Unions (ACV-CSC) with the purpose of tracking the voting behaviour of Belgian MEPs on social rights. Continue Reading
This is another sign that things are moving. Decision-making in the Council has traditionally been seen as a process converging towards consensus, so that the final outcome satisfies everyone. However, Brexit and the discussions on the future of Europe do reveal that some differences between Member States are more difficult to reconcile than others.
The vote on how to address fraud against the EU budget has become a key sticking point, with some governments being less willing than others to support EU’s defence of its own financial interests. Continue Reading
Doru Peter Frantescu is co-founder and CEO of VoteWatch Europe. His data-driven reports on the actual voting behavior of Parliamentarians and Governments in the EU decision-making have been quoted by reputed institutions and the media in over 35 countries on 5 continents.
In a panel this week at the European Business Summit and an interview with Euronews, he spoke about the directions in which we can expect the EU to go, applying the current trends revealed by the processing of actual decision-making data (as opposed to carefully-crafted political statements) to the events expected between now and the end of 2019. Continue Reading
Things are moving in Spain. With the election of Pedro Sanchez as the new leader of the Spanish Socialist party (PSOE), a potential referendum on the independence of Catalonia in September and Spanish Government’s tight majority in the national Parliament, there are plenty of reasons to take a closer look at this country’s politics. Pedro Sanchez’ victory took place in an already unstable political setting and is likely to enhance polarisation in Spanish politics. Continue Reading
Yesterday, the European Parliament passed a resolution calling for a stronger EU response to some of the initiatives carried forward by the Hungarian government. Amongst others, Orban’s policies on migration and the attacks against the Central European University in Budapest are harshly criticised in the report.
An ad-hoc liberal-left wing coalition succeeded to rally a majority to push through a very critical resolution that asks for the launch of the rule of law procedure, which is only activated in case of risks of breaches of fundamental values of the EU. Continue Reading