Jerzy Buzek is in position to be the new European Parliament’s president. He could be the first from the EU’s former-communist states to hold the office.
Who succeeds German conservative Hans-Gert Poettering will be formalised by a vote in a week’s time, at the assembly’s inaugural full sitting. Its biggest political blocs – conservative and socialist – have a deal to share the presidency for the next five years — Buzek first. Fellow European People’s Party affiliate Italian Mario Mauro withdrew his candidature on Sunday. At a press conference in Brussels, Buzek said: “The president of the EPP group told us that we are supported for the European Parliament presidency by the socialists, but also by the liberals, since Mister Graham Watson has withdrawn his candidature.” The British liberal’s spokeswoman, however, refuted this, saying Watson was still in the running. Therefore, several MEPs will be up for the job. The United European Left has announced it too will present a candidate for the vote next Tuesday.