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More scandal rocks Von Der Leyen: she favored her party fellow for a 17,000-euro-a-month position. The “Piepergate”



Another tile has fallen on Ursula von der Leyen’s head, harming her position as a candidate for president of the European Commission. After the news about “Pfizergate” – the European prosecutor’s investigation into the negotiations between the Commission chairwoman and the pharmaceutical company’s CEO over the 1.8 billion vaccine contract – there is already talk in Brussels about “Piepergate.

The new front concerns the new role of German MEP Markus Pieper, von der Leyen’s party colleague in the Cdu, who was appointed by the president last Jan. 31 as “special EU envoy for small and medium-sized enterprises.” A few days later the German Christian Democratic Party, which will not reappoint Pieper, had formalized its support for von der Leyen’s reappointment.

A crossfire was unleashed against the commission chairwoman over the nomination, with blows coming both from the European Parliament and from within the college of commissioners itself. After tabling an urgent question in mid-March, initiated by Green Daniel Freund, MEPs are now threatening to block Pieper’s appointment as part of the budget discharge procedure, scheduled during next week’s mini-plenary.

An amendment calling for the revocation of the mandate, thanks to which the German is supposed to receive a compensation of about 17,000 euros a month, will be put to a vote.The initiative is supported by the Greens, the Socialists, the Left, and could also gain the support of the Liberals, who had signed the question. The accusation against von der Leyen is that she “did not consider the other candidates although they had a better track record.” The chairwoman of the Commission would therefore have engaged in “political favoritism.”

Precisely for this reason, four heavyweight commissioners wrote a letter last week calling for clarity: “The appointment of Markus Pieper,” it reads, “has raised questions about the transparency and impartiality of the appointment process. The document is signed by High Representative Josep Borrell, Economy Commissioner Paolo Gentiloni, Labor Commissioner Nicolas Schmit, and Internal Market Commissioner Thierry Breton. The first three are exponents of the Socialists (Schmit is the Spitzenkandidaten of the Pse), while Breton – given also his closeness to Macron – is considered an expression of the Liberals. They call for scheduling “a discussion at the College of Commissioners” so as to answer the question from MEPs who ask “what score Mr. Pieper got in the internal and external evaluations compared to the other two shortlisted candidates and whether the decision was indeed based on merit, gender and geographical balance.”

The European Commission spokesman responded by saying that von der Leyen “has full confidence that the procedure was in order,” and assured that the EU executive would take part in debate scheduled in Parliament. Also on the list were Czech Martina Dlabajova and Swedish Anna Stellinger who, according to rumors, scored better than Pieper, who, however, was proposed as a candidate, in agreement with von der Leyen, by Budget Commissioner Johannes Hahn, also an EPP member.

Obviously being from the same party as Von Der Leyen, and not being confirmed as a candidate in the next election did not weigh in his choice (I hope you can catch the irony). In any case, the European institutions are becoming convenient repositories for trumped-up politicians who no longer count for anything but earn huge and unjustified sums of money. Pieper will do nothing for Small Businesses, of course if we do not consider among this his person economic career.

All that remains of this whole affair is the shame


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