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We do not trust the Von Der Leyen Commission

Prior to a crucial vote in Strasbourg, the Federation of Young European Greens calls on Members of the European Parliament not to vote in favour of the new European Commission.

In the last European Elections, millions of young voters across Europe demanded more action from the European Union towards a sustainable, social, welcoming and inclusive, and Feminist Europe. Following these elections, despite the attempts from Greens to create a large coalition based on content, Ursula Von der Leyen was elected as president of the European Commission. Member States later nominated candidates for Commissioner who were questioned by the European Parliament.

First of all, we believe the Von der Leyen Commission is not yet up to tackle the climate emergency. The nomination of an « Executive Commissioner for European Green Deal » cannot hide the fact that the proposed policies regarding crucial domains in the fight against climate change such as trade, industry or agriculture are not moving away from the current, destructive status quo. How can we think the Von Der Leyen Commission would solve the climate crisis while still negotiating free-trade deals, including with climate-denying governments like Brasil or the USA, or while refusing to radically reform the Common Agricultural Policy?

Moreover, the objective for the EU to become carbon neutral by 2050 is not enough. The climate crisis need an emergency speed solution to transition to a carbon negative society by: reducing emissions by 70%, complete phase out of fossil fuels to renewables by 2030, and to become carbon neutral by 2035.

 

This proposed Commission doesn’t only fail to live up to the climate crisis, it would also includes several worrying Commissioners and portfolios :

Dubravka Šuica, Vice-President-Designate for Democracy and Demography, who has voted against most resolutions in favour of Sexual and Reproductive Health and Rights, and refused to condemn the far-right theory of « Great Replacement » during her hearing.

Oliver Varhelyi, Commissioner-Designate for enlargement and neighbouring policy, used to be the voice of Victor Orban in Brussels, and will be in charge of assessing if candidate countries respect rule of law although his country is under a procedure for breaking the rule of law. He is a career diplomat and a technocrat and there is little guarantee that he will not be a national delegate in the Commission but an independent one.

Thierry Breton, Commissioner Designate for Internal Market, used to be, not earlier than 1 month ago, the CEO of a company whose business areas (in Digital Economy, Defence and Industry) completely match his portfolio, creating big risks of conflicts of interests.

Margaritis Schinas, Vice-President-Designate for « Promoting our European Way of Life » is in charge of a portfolio whose name and scope (it covers migration, home affairs and culture) suggests that migrants are a threat to a so-called European Way of Life. Moreover the title sounds like a neo-fascist narrative that aims to impose a certain way of life - a partriarchial, heteronormative, white superior life. 

 

All together, we don’t trust the Von Der Leyen to bring the change the European Union needs. We can’t afford to lose five more years to address climate, environmental, social and democratic crises in Europe. Therefore, the Federation of Young European Greens calls on Members of European Parliament not to vote in favour of the Von Der Leyen Commission November 27th.