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Controversy Rages In Germany Over Von Der Leyen’s EU Nomination

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Veteran German Christian Democrat Wolfgang Schaeuble has backed the nomination of his fellow CDU member, Ursula von der Leyen, to head the European Commission.

Schaeuble, after backing Ursula’s nomination criticised the way she was put forward for the job.

Schaeuble, the current president of the Bundestag, after serving as finance minister for eight years made her statement about Ursula in a remark published on Friday by the Augsburger Allgemeine newspaper.

“I believe that Ursula von der Leyen can be a good president of the commission,’’ Schaeuble said.

He advised the European Parliament to accept von der Leyen, currently German Defence Minister, as the compromise candidate put forward by EU leaders.

Schaeuble advised people to accept Leyen instead of the so-called Spitzenkandidaten (lead candidates) that represent parliament’s major political blocs.

He broadly agreed with the critics’ point that the nomination was made over the heads of the members of the newly elected parliament.

The lead candidate process is supposed to democratise the selection of the commission president by letting parliament play a bigger role.

In contrast to Schaueble, the head of the far-right Alternative for Germany (AfD), Joerg Meuthen, the AfD’s lead candidate in the May European elections, made clear that the party would not support von der Leyen.

“We have no reason to vote for von der Leyen,’’ he told public broadcaster ZDF on Friday.

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