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07 March, 2018

At the court of the EU bubble kings

by Eric Maurice

Part 3 - Democracy and legitimacy

All this would be just an anecdote about the EU bubble court, worth entertaining columns, if it had not come amid grand speeches about EU democracy and the legitimacy of the institutions.



On 14 January, Juncker defended to the public the so-called Spitzenkandidat process, by which the commission president is chosen according to the result of the European elections.

The commission chief, he said, is "not an anonymous bureaucrat or a putschist who would have forced the doors of the Berlaymont".

Just a week after, he accepted that his head of cabinet becomes civil servant in chief in what many inside the house consider as a coup - and then legitimised the move by a press conference.

The press conference is now brandished by the commission as the proof that all was done in transparency. As if journalists called at the last minute for a news they didn't know had all the elements at the time to ask the right questions.

When details about what truly happened leaked to the media - the commission spokesman, reacted by calling Jean Quatremer, the correspondent of France's Liberation who revealed the details, a 'Robespierre', the French revolutionary responsible for the Terror and its thousands of deads.

Tired with journalists asking for information he did not want to give, the spokesman also compared them to his children "who don't listen".

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