Wednesday, 3 June 2009

on Labour winning this Thursday anyway

Gordon Brown may lose this Thursday, but Labour will still win regardless of the outcome. This is thanks to David Cameron.

If elections were truly European, this Thursday you would be voting for either the Party of European Socialists, the Movement for European Reform, the Alliance of Liberals and Democrats for Europe or one of the other party groups in the European Parliament. Even though we aren't, secretly, we are.

As I mentioned in my previous blog post, the European Parliament is keen to make its presence felt, as a result an interesting state of affairs could develop this Thursday. Should the Predict 09.EU current prediction for the 2009 European Parliament elections hold true, the Party of European Socialists (of which Labour is a member) will become the largest party in the European Parliament.

This is significant as it is brought about solely by David Cameron's decision to leave the main EPP-ED party grouping and form his own party grouping with right wing parties from Poland and the Czech Republic.

The balance of power in Parliament, according to Predict09 would still be split 42% centre right and 40% centre left with the liberals in the middle on 12%. Below is the predicted makeup of the party groupings following the election:

Party Grouping UK Party Predicted MEP's Percentage in Parliament
ID UKIP 19 3%
non two former Conservative MEPs 26 4%
Greens Greens 42 6%
EUL   44 6%
UEN   62 8%
MER Conservatives 64 9%
ALDE Lib Dems 88 12%
EPP   184 25%
PES Labour 207 28%

A second term Barroso presidency could not be guaranteed and one cannot rule out a PES member becoming President of the European Commission, if a compromise candidate between the centre-left and the liberals could be found. In addition, the composition is important as in the European Parliament Rules of Procedure (Rule 177 which isn't expected to be changed substantially in 2009):

Members of committees and committees of inquiry shall be elected after nominations have been submitted by the political groups and the non-attached Members. The Conference of Presidents shall submit proposals to Parliament. The composition of the committees shall, as far as possible, reflect the composition of Parliament.

Which means most committees would again have a larger PES representation, as it would be the largest party in the European Parliament. Coupled with this, the Polish sister party of the Conservatives in David Cameron's Movement for European Reform have stated that they will not be whipped, creating even more disorganisation in their structure.

David Cameron has unwittingly given Labour control of the European Parliament, he has done so by deciding to side with parties who believe global warming is a lie and that homosexuality is a disease. As the Guardian puts it:

If the EPP can claim to be an alliance of winners, Cameron's new caucus looks like a coalition of losers. In Poland, the Kaczy´nskis' party will lose the election this weekend, taking perhaps 15 of 50 seats. In government from 2005-2007, the Kaczy´nskis' PiS formed a coalition with extremists and ultra-nationalists, conducted witchhunts of opponents, pursued deeply illiberal policies and was turfed out of office as a national embarrassment.

[...]

In the Czech Republic, Topolánek has just been toppled as prime minister and his ODS will also probably lose the election. The party's founder and Topolánek's enemy, President Václav Klaus, is Europe's leading climate change denier and views the European Union as synonymous with the Soviet Union. Brussels is the new Moscow.

David Cameron having dodged the issue of the EPP since his election as Conservative Party leader, appears to have made a catastrophic decision. Expect U-turns come Monday, buried amongst Gordon Brown's reshuffle (or resignation).

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