Commission nominees face EU hot seat | News | DW | 01.10.2014
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Commission nominees face EU hot seat

All 27 of Jean-Claude Juncker's incoming European Commission members face confirmation hearings by parliament. Some commissioners will face tougher scrutiny than others.

Confirmation hearings of nominated European Commissioners continued on Wednesday, with some nominees facing what could be the toughest questioning of the week from European parliamentarians.

Incoming Commission head Jean-Claude Juncker called the 27 nominees his "winning team," but parliamentarians have particular scruples with a few of Juncker's EU all-stars.

Britain's Jonathan Hill, Hungary's Tibor Navracsics, and Miguel Arias Canete of Spain are expected to face difficult questioning from European lawmakers.

Jonathan Hill: Financial Services Commissioner

Hill's ties to the lobbying industry are of concern to EU parliamentarians, as are his ties to his native Britain, which has been traditionally wary of financial regulation by the EU. There are concerns that unsavory practices of London's financial sector might go unchecked under Hill.

Tibor Navracsics: Commissioner of Education, Culture and Citizens

A number of controversial laws were passed in Hungary while Navracsics served as the country's justice minister under former premier Viktor Orban, calling his record on democracy into question.

One law created a new authority with the right to regulate media content and impose fines for radio and television.

Miguel Arias Canete: Climate Action & Energy Commissioner

The Spanish politician allegedly has family ties to the oil industry in Spain, creating a potential conflict of interest if he is given the portfolio that includes climate change. Alleged sexist remarks during a recent Spanish election have not helped his reputation, either.

If the confirmation of any of Juncker's nominees is delayed, it could postpone the day the new Commission takes office, which is currently scheduled for November 1.

mz/kms (Reuters, dpa, AFP)

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