Guy Verhofstadt most ‘likely candidate’ to be appointed European Commission President
The ALDE Group leader in the European Parliament, Guy Verhofstadt MEP (Open VLD, Belgium), has been named the most ‘likely candidate’ to be appointed the next President of the European Commission.
In a survey conducted jointly by European news outlet EurActiv and consultancy firm Burson-Marsteller to mark the mid-term of the Barosso II Commission, the former Belgian Prime Minister topped the list 9.1%, ahead of former UK Prime Minister Tony Blair at 8.5% and Jose Manuel Barroso (for a third term) at 8.2%.
Asked who they would like to see appointed as the next Commission President in 2014, almost one in five (17.9%) respondents voted for Mr Verhofstadt.
The poll surveyed 811 people drawn chiefly from the EU policymaking world, with 29.6% saying they work for the EU institutions, 10.2% in universities, 11.8% in consultancies and 13.2% in business. The respondents were drawn from all age brackets, with one-third between the age of 31-40, and from different member states and the rest of the world, with the largest number from Germany (12.9%) and Belgium (12.6%).
Despite media reports to that effect, European Liberal Democrats meeting in Dublin for their annual Congress did not discuss names of potential common candidates for leading EU roles. However, it is encouraging to note that a liberal candidate is considered a front-runner for such a role. AldeParty