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24 May 2008

From the Open Europe Press Survey of 23rd May, 2008:

Senior MEPs block expenses transparency reforms in secret meeting The FT reports that MEPs have blocked moves to force them to account for how they spend their expenses. British Liberal Democrat MEP Diana Wallis complained that the proposals were scrapped by senior MEPs in a closed-door meeting without warning. Parliamentary sources said that the leaders of the two biggest political groupings, the centre-right European People's Party and the leftwing Socialists, had lobbied for changes just hours before the crunch meeting. Both are dominated by German MEPs implacably opposed to sweeping reform. "It was chaotic. It is no way to run even a local parish council. There were handwritten notes in Italian being exchanged in the meeting," said Mrs Wallis. She also said that there was no definitive draft of the conclusions. Mrs Wallis served for several months on a working party that produced an exhaustive report on proposed changes for Monday's meeting of the group of senior MEPs who govern the Strasbourg assembly. Instead Hans-Gert Pöttering, the speaker, tabled his own two-page, 10-point plan which he said took into account criticisms.

Giscard d'Estaing blasts "semi-cladestine" appointment of EU President Agence Europe reports that Valery Giscard d'Estaing is worried about the "semi-clandestine" nomination of the future EU President, and the fact that while Europe's leaders say Europe must be brought closer to its citizens, the same leaders are well on the way to designating the President "without any consultation." He told a meeting of the European Movement in Paris: "If nothing is done, and it looks as though that will be the case, then this will be the worst appointed leader in the world. There will be nothing to be proud of."


13 May 2008

Explaining then excusing MEP corruption

MEP Daniel Hannan's Telegraph blog today attempts to excuse his colleagues, read here

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