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The next Commission will be centre-right, says Nicola Procaccini of the ECR group

Euronews
Euronews Copyright Euronews
Copyright Euronews
By Vincenzo Genovese
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This article was originally published in Italian

Nicola Procaccini, co-chair of the European Conservatives and Reformists Group, predicts a centre-right European Commission following the upcoming EU elections.

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The next European Commission will be more right-wing than the current one, Nicola Procaccini, co-chairman of the Conservatives and Reformists group in the European Parliament, tells Euronews in a 'Global Conversation' interview.

Procaccini criticised many of the initiatives taken in the last five years by the European Commission supported by popular, socialist and liberal parties, which he considers too 'left-wing'. 

He agreed 'very little' with the actions of European Commission President Ursula von der Leyen and also criticised the decisions made by Frans Timmermans, the vice-president responsible for climate policy.

"Timmermans had even more power than Ursula von der Leyen, being able to implement the Commission's main government programme, the Green Deal. Fortunately, this is something that will no longer be possible, because regardless of how the European elections go, we already know that the next European Commission will be centre-right because the commissioners are nominated by the governments, not by the elections, and the governments are centre-right," Procaccini said.

The ECR group has not nominated a lead candidate because it opposes the Spitzenkandidat system, believing that the selection of the Commission president should be solely determined by national governments.

Procaccini, however, would not comment on whether the Conservatives would support von der Leyen, or another EPP candidate in the next legislature, which could open the door to a majority in the next European Parliament for the Conservatives.

"This is something we have to see according to the balance of power because they might have to support one of our candidates," he said.

According to Procaccini, stopping irregular immigration must be the first objective in the next legislature of his political group. He rejects the label 'Eurosceptics', despite the anti-European narrative of the nationalist parties that compose it, such as Brothers of Italy (Fratelli d'Italia), Vox in Spain and Law and Justice in Poland.

"We are those who want to go back to the original idea of the European Union, which is an alliance of nations that does a few things together but that are important, and does things that nation states alone would not be able to do at their best," he said.

The MEP from Fratelli d'Italia reiterates his opposition to any step forward in European integration. He also defended the nation states' right of veto, while showing himself in favour of issuing common debt.

Regarding the future of his party, which is poised to become the largest in the ECR in terms of MEPs, he made it clear that Fratelli d'Italia will not join the European People's Party.

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