Wednesday, 29 July 2009

Tony Blair's Race for the European Presidency.


Once the Lisbon Treaty has been ratified by all 27 member states of the European Union, the post of the President of the European Council will be created. This will essentially make whoever has this role as "President of the European Union", as they will have a key role in detemining the policies and international relations of the Union throughout their two and a half year term in office (a term which can be renewed only once), and will also be the international face of the EU. The position will also be unelected and therefore undemocratic, a change from the current system of the rotating presidency that allow national leaders (who have a democratic mandate) to set the EU's agenda during a six-monthly term.

So who better to have this role than no other than a certain Antony Charles Lynton Blair! Blair has set his eyes on the Presidency for the past year, but wasn't offically confirmed to be the UK candidate until two weeks ago by Baroness Kinnock. Apparently, she felt that Blair "could step into this new role with a lot of respect and he would be generally welcomed." The same has been said by pretty much everyone in the Labour Government. Opposition to the idea has come from, well, the Opposition.

It seems that the only people that can stop Blair from becoming President, or even creating the position of President in the first place, are the Irish, as they are to hold a second referendum on the Lisbon Treaty in October. Of course, even if they do say "Yes" this time to the Treaty, Blair would have to get support by many from the continent. It seems that his only endorsement is from vile, seedy Italian Premier, Silvio Berlusconi. According to him, Blair has the "ideal personality" for the job as President. It was originally thought that Nicholas Sarkozy was a Blair supporter, but he's now endorsed Blair's main rival to the position, former Prime Minister of Spain Felipe Gonzalez. Concern has been expressed by Swedish Prime Minister Fredrik Reinfeldt (who currently holds the rotating presidency and will chair the meeting at the end of October that will decide who will become "EU President"), Spanish PM José Luis Rodriguez Zapatero and Angela Merkel, who could actually ruin Blair's plans if she loses Germany's general election in September, as she has also expressed strong desire for the job.

Personally, Blair becoming "President of Europe" is as laughable as his current position as Middle East Peacy Enovy for the Quartet. Baroness Kinnock's comment that "he would be generally welcomed" into the position is just as laughable and proves how detatched from reality the Government is, obviously ignoring the fact that millions throughout this country and in Europe protested against his and Bush's decision to invade Iraq. I'm hopeful that Blair would not get the role in the end, I just can't see the leaders of Europe rally behind a man that is so unpopular by people in his own country (a country which is detatched from the Eurozone) and cares more about his image than anything else.

In the meantime, there's an online petition that's been going around for the past year. More than 32'000 have signed it so far!

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