In the statement below, Socialist Party (CWI in Ireland) Member of the European parliament, Joe Higgins, explains why he voted against the new European Commission, which represents the continuation of neo-liberal policies vindicating the warnings of anti-Lisbon treaty campaigners. See video of Joe’s speech in parliament below.

Joe Higgins (CWI) opposes new neo-liberal European commission

Why I Voted Against the European Commission - Joe Higgins MEP

A new neo-liberal EU Commission has been endorsed by the European Parliament, with the support of all the major political groups. What we have here is the European political establishment deciding that, for the next five years they will implement the same policies, of liberalisation and privatisation that have created an enormous economic crisis in many European countries. That is why I voted against the new Commission in the European Parliament today.

The new Commission is made up of a variety of establishment politicians, united in their belief that working people should pay the price for the economic crisis and committed to the further militarisation of Europe. Evidence of this is provided by how the EU is being used to impose policies in Greece that will drive living standards down even further.

The warnings of those who campaigned against the Lisbon treaty are proving to be prescient. The Foreign Minister of the biggest power in Europe, Germany, has declared that he favours the development of a European army. A recent European Court of Justice judgement means that we will now have to pay VAT on vital public services provided by local authorities, like bin charges or swimming pools. It represents another burden for hard-pressed working people.

Instead of a Europe built in the interests of big business, I stand for a Europe where the interests of working people worldwide come first.

Statement published on

Committee for a workers' International publications


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