Barring any last-minute surprises today will see the nomination of Jean-Claude Juncker as the next president of the European Commission.
The former prime minister of Luxembourg is the candidate of the EU’s mainstream Conservatives, the biggest group in the European parliament.
“I am not designated European Commission president yet. If common sense prevails this will happen at the end of the week. But it seems that common sense is very unequally distributed,” he said to laughter and applause, “so one will have to wait.” The comment was an obvious dig at Britain’s prime minister.
Today’s EU summit begins with a working breakfast shortly after which the nomination announcement is expected.
It comes a day after EU leaders united in remembering the start of the First World War, but David Cameron is not toeing the united line on Juncker taking the job.
“I am opposing Mr Juncker’s candidature. I think it’s the wrong approach for Europe. I think it’s the wrong principle to go by. But as well as doing what I have said I will do, I will also deliver that referendum, I will deliver that renegotiation and the British people will be able to decide,” he insisted.
Compromises and concessions have shaped Europe since the continent abandoned war as a means of settling disputes, but Cameron is having none of it. He insists Juncker is too much of a federalist and will only increase government from Brussels at the expense of national parliaments.