Impact of EPP-Fidesz divorce to be bigger than expected

TUBS, CC BY-SA 3.0 , via Wikimedia Commons

It is hard to overestimate the impact of Fidesz’s choice to leave the EPP group in the European Parliament. In addition to the obvious changes in the balance of power in the EU institutions and the related policy implications, the broader geopolitical dynamics should not be neglected. Concretely, while the departure of Orban’s MEPs facilitates closer cooperation between EPP, Macron’s group and the Social-Democrats, it also deepens the geographical divides between the North-Western EU and (part of) “new Europe”, providing fertile ground for the increasing influence of non-EU players in the EU’s backyard. Continue Reading

EU votes to step up measures to counter Russia’s propaganda, but Southern Europeans do not agree

Over the last couple of weeks, the position of Russia on the world stage has considerably strengthened. Not only the new President-elected of the US, Donald Trump, advocates for closer relations with Putin’s country, but also pro-Russian forces are getting stronger in Europe: in Moldova and Bulgaria, candidates who want closer ties with Russia won the Presidential elections, whereas in Estonia, the main pro-Russian party just joined the government. Continue Reading

Will Poland “sacrifice” Tusk’s EU Council presidency due to internal politics?

Tusk

by Łukasz Król and Doru Frantescu

Jarosław Kaczyński, leader of the ruling Law and Justice Party (ECR), recently announced that he might not support Tusk for a second term as the President of the European Council (Tusk’s term ends in June 2017). Is this just a tactical move or will he really go all the way and withdraw support for his political rival?

Law and Justice has long called for deep reforms within the EU, which include a stronger Council, weaker Commission, and more power to individual member states. Continue Reading