Movers and shakers of EU politics – June 2018

While the summer break is just behind the corner, the hectic political debate in Brussels shows no sign of abating. In fact, the upcoming year will bring about a series of brand new changes: a new balance of power in the EP following the elections in May 2019, a new leadership of the EU institutions, and the (tentative) finalization of the Brexit negotiations. At the same time, EU decision-makers are expected to make progress on the proposed reforms of the Eurozone governance, the EU asylum system and the ambitious proposals for the next Multi-Annual Financial Framework, among many other hot issues. Continue Reading

Winners and losers of EU politics – May 2018 (MFF, CAP, etc)

Who gets what from the EU money, the regulation of the labour market, mandatory labelling, subsidies for farming (CAP) and a new investment fund for the Eurozone were the chief topics on which continental political forces fought during the latest plenary session of the European Parliament.

In the key showdown, MEPs  took a stand on the Commission’s proposal for the next Multiannual Financial Framework. Continue Reading

Hungary: votes show nuanced positions among countries and political families

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

Comparing the positions of the Hungarian Government and Hungarian parties in the EP on symbolic European issues

Executive Summary

The purpose of this joint study of VoteWatch and Policy Solutions is to examine the voting patterns of Hungarian Members of the European Parliament in order to figure out whether Hungarian political parties have the same positions on key issues in both Brussels and Budapest.

For this reason, we explored how Hungarian MEPs voted in the European Parliament using VoteWatch.eu and compared it to their respective national party’s position by using Policy Solutions. Continue Reading

EU-Turkey cooperation on migration not to be linked to EU accession negotiation, say the MEPs

Against the background of the criticised EU-Turkey political agreement on irregular migration of March 2016, EU Parliamentarians adopted a non-binding resolution supporting the engagement between the two entities on the refugee and migration crisis but also underlining that EU-Turkey cooperation on migration should not be linked to EU accession negotiation process. Continue Reading

EU Parliamentarians back the opening of Rule of Law dialogue with Poland

Photo: European Parliament

EU parliamentarians overwhelming adopted a non-binding resolution calling on the Polish government to respect EU fundamental principles of democracy and rule of law.

The motion was approved by 513 MEPs, whereas 142 opposed and 30 abstained. The votes in favour came mainly from all the pro-EU groups, the Christian-Democrats (EPP), the Socialists (S&D), the Liberals (ALDE), the leftist group GUE/NGL and the Greens. Continue Reading

EP criticises the Hungarian government, but fails to reach consensus to request activation of rule of law clause

A non-binding resolution urging the EU to monitor the situation in Hungary as regards the threats to democracy, the rule of law and fundamental rights in the country has been adopted by the EU Parliamentarians.

The motion expressed serious concerns regarding the measures taken in recent months that have made access to international protection very difficult, have criminalised refugees, migrants and asylum seekers, and urged the Hungarian Government to return to normal procedures and repeal emergency measures. Continue Reading