In politics, strength is in numbers and in the European Parliament this is even more the case, especially after the upcoming European elections which will lead to a highly-fragmented House. So far, the European parliamentary groups have been impressively cohesive/disciplined, if we consider the big cultural and economic diversity of their members. Continue Reading
The next European Parliament will be a more fragmented one, as big groups will dwindle and smaller groups will grow. The EPP+S&D coalition, for example, is likely to fail short of 50% of the seats, for the first time since we hold EU elections.
This will make it much harder to make coalitions, which can explain the moves of some MEPs to try to prevent over-fragmentation by imposing stricter rules on the creation of political groups. Continue Reading
The group of Europe of Freedom and Direct Democracy (EFDD) in the European Parliament is mainly formed of the British Independence Party (UKIP), who has 23 Members and the Italian Five Star Movement, who has 17 Members. These two parties have joined forces at the start of the current EP term to form a parliamentary group, which is normally formed by parties that share common values and policy views.
Background: there are 7 political families in the European Parliament. Individual Members of the European Parliament (MEPs) sit not according to nationality, but join political families according to their own ideology. Then, for most of the time, they vote according the position decided within the group. Some groups are more united when the votes are about civil liberties, others are more disciplined when voting on economic affairs. Continue Reading