Dutch EU Commissioner Timmermans Seeks Leftist Nomination for Commission President – Report
Timmermans will be competing for the Socialist nomination with Slovakia’s EU Commissioner Maros Sefcovic.
Dutch EU Commissioner Frans Timmermans is to announce his bid to win the leftist nomination to become the next President of the European Commission after Jean-Claude Juncker retires in 2019, according to a report.
Timmermans is presently the second top official in the Commission – since 2014, he has been its First Vice President as well as the Commissioner for Better Regulation, Interinstitutional Relations, the Rule of Law and the Charter of Fundamental Rights.
The Dutch EU Commissioner has already won the backing of some socialist parties across the EU, according to a report of Politico.eu.
Timmermans appears to have won the backing of Andrea Nahles, the leader of the German Social Democratic Party
“I am convinced that Frans Timmermans unifies and strengthens our European party family and will lead us to a strong common result in the election for the European Parliament next year,” Nahles wrote in a letter cited in the report.
Timmermans has been mentioned as the possible candidate of the Party of European Socialists (PES), the left-wing party family in the EU, for the past few weeks.
Before joining the Juncker Commission in 2014, he served as Foreign Minister of the Netherlands.
To clinch the PES nomination for President of the European Commission, a candidate needs the support of their national party plus eight other parties which are PES.
The Party of European Socialists is going to announce its 2019 candidate at a congress in Portugal’s capital Lisbon in December 2018.
The election of the head of the European Commission depends on the results from the European Parliament elections, with the candidate of the European party grouping that gets the most votes being nominated for confirmation of the national leaders of the member states at the European Council.
Frans Timmermans is thus competing for the PES nomination with his colleague at the Juncker Commission, Maros Sefcovic, the Vice President for the Energy Union, Maros Sefcovic, who is the Commissioner from Slovakia.
The main competitors for the nomination of PES’s leading opponent, the rightist European People’s Party, are Manfred Weber, chair of the EPP group in the European Parliament, and former Prime Minister of Finland Alexander Stubb, with EU Brexit negotiator Michel Barnier also said to be interested in the top job.
(Banner image: Frans Timmermans on Twitter)