Monday, June 8, 2009

Europeans voted their representative to EU Parliament

500 Millions European voted in the past four days for electing their representatives at the Europan Parliament. It has been the biggest trans-national election in history. The results of the seventh European Parliament elections can be seen here:
The European People's Party (Christian Democrat) and European Democrats has won the majority of the Strasbourg seats, 263 out of 736. The Socialist Group is the second party with 161 votes, while Liberal, United Left and "Union for Europe" parties experienced a vote decrease (from 100 to 80, from 41 to 33 and from 44 to 35, respectively). On the contrary the Green Party saw an increase to its European MPs (from 35 to 44).
These elections will probably be remembered for the lowest ever turnaround (only 43% of European participated to the pools) since the first European Parliament elections in 1979 and for the domestic approach that have caratherized the electoral campaign in several countries. These elections, indeed, represented an important political test in many countries affected by the economic crisis and struggling with a recovering economy and stability.
A signal of an increasing disaffection for the European Union itself, European voters have chosen not to care, a result that is touchable among young people and first voters as well, deserting the polling stations. 'Can you hear me Europe', a public media campaign sponsored by the Europan Commission and MTV offered young people a platform to express themselves, to tell the European Union who they are, and to address Brussels with their concerns, dreams, complaints and ideals. The campaign reached its high point on 30 April, when young people gathered in Berlin, Milan, Prague and other cities to shout «Can you hear me Europe». The success of the campaign is debatable but it certainly showed that young people get disaffected from politics when they don't see their problems solved and their voices heard, as much as the senior voters do.
Hans-Gert Pöttering, president of the European Parliament, blames the media. “In political talk shows, the parliamentarians of the country are invited and almost never Eurodeputies, even though the subjects discussed — questions of economy, environment, terrorism — concern European legislation,” he told Le Monde.
The Parliament is the only directly elected European institution thus having real power. It can amend or reject proposals for new laws from the European Commission. Few Europeans realize it, but the bulk of our legislation on issues like the environment, consumer rights and transport is made in this way, rather than in national capitals.

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