Commentary Politics

Zahradil praises Kaczyński and Orbán

MEP Jan Zahradil, who finished second in the election for the President of the European Parliament, comments on the latest events at a European level.

The Czech Republic will have two Vice-presidents in the newly composed European Parliament. However, there is still room for improvement as Central European countries should obtain more top EU post in general. MEP Jan Zahradil (ODS) spoke about the latest events in the EU in an interview for Czech Radio.

In the interview, Jan Zahradil admitted that he had no chance to defeat the Socialist candidate David-Maria Sassoli in the election of the President of the European Parliament since Sassoli was backed by three of the strongest EP factions. "However, he only won thanks to receiving about ten votes more than he needed," emphasized Zahradil.

At the same time, he appreciated the fact that the Czech Republic has helped to prevent the election of Frans Timmermans to the post of the President of the European Commission. Zahradil considers Timmermans to be a conflict-seeking and controversial person. "The game he started to play against Hungary and Poland had a clear political-ideological purpose of a European Leftist," he added.

Zahradil thinks that Timmermans does not care about sticking to the rules of the EU. "The European left-wing politicians strongly despise the conservative governments in Poland and Hungary. It is an ideological struggle." Besides, Timmermans scored some points with his voters by criticizing these governments, concluded Zahradil while stressing that the European Court of Justice is the only official authority dealing with a possible breach of EU laws.

"Politicians in both the European Parliament and the European Commission should respect the fact that there are national elections that produce legitimate national governments, even if those governments have different political opinions than most MEPs,” said Zahradil.

In this regard, he appreciated political leaders of Poland and Hungary. “I like Kaczyński´s and Orbán´s emphasis on national state and national interests. That is a common thread of us, European Conservatives."

However, Jan Zahradil also commented on the situation of Ursula von der Leyen, who is expected to become the new EC President. According to Zahradil, there can still occur some unpleasant surprises since the German Social Democrats, the Greens and the supporters of the so-called Spitzenkandidaten system might not agree to vote for her as she is not a leader of any EP faction.

"The Spitzenkandidaten system was created to bend EU agreements to the advantage of some powerful people, and thus discredit the influence of the European Council," Zahradil concluded.

So far, von der Leyen has the support of approximately 280 MEPs but needs a hundred more votes to get elected.

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