Today the Socialists and Democrats voted in favour of the new European Commission, after five months of intense negotiations with the Commission president Ursula von der Leyen and demanding hearings of all the Commissioners.
Following the vote, the S&D president Iratxe García Pérez said:
“Our Group has managed to maximise our leverage and to shape an agenda for change in the next five years. We also secured crucial portfolios for the S&D Commissioners, and we will work closely with the Commission to make sure that together we accomplish the ecological transformation Europe needs without leaving anyone behind. Young people remind us that it is their planet and their future at stake.
“This is also the most gender-balanced Commission ever, thanks to our pressure. Over the next years, we will keep pushing, not only for gender balance in terms of numbers, but also for a gender dimension mainstreamed in all policy areas, and we want a European Directive to eradicate gender-based violence.
“The best frame for this transformation, and to ensure coherence between different Commissioners, is the Sustainable Development Goals, which we managed to include. Von der Leyen has accepted many of our proposals, such as changing the European Semester and introducing a Just Transition Fund. My Group and I will fight from day one to ensure proper funding for this transformation.
“We are very pleased that the New Green Deal is the priority of the next European Commission and we know that Frans Timmermans will do an excellent job. The climate emergency cannot wait!
“We now have five years to deliver to our citizens and to show that the European Union has the solutions to the problems. We cannot afford to fail. Otherwise, Euro-sceptics, populists and those who want to re-nationalise policies will gain ground against those of us who know that only together, we are stronger.
“The continuity of the European project will depend to a great extent on what we do during the next five years, and that the citizens again trust in these institutions that we have here today. The Socialists and Democrats have made it very clear: we want to live up to the circumstances, and that is why today, we will support today with our demanding, loyal and vigilant vote to this College.”