Local view for "http://purl.org/linkedpolitics/eu/plenary/2002-12-05-Speech-4-025"

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"Mr President, sometimes it is an advantage to be spokesman for the third group in Parliament because it has provided me with time to read the Commission's paper. I can, therefore, say with some authority that I strongly welcome it. It is a strong assertion of the Commission's orthodox function and it should shift the debate about where a power lies, centre stage inside the Convention. It represents a challenge to those Prime Ministers who prefer to opine on the fringes of the Convention but who seem far too frightened to contribute official proposals. As most of the items in the Commission's programme appear also in my draft for a federal Union it is clear that I shan't be your fiercest critic and, while I commend the firm rejection of an idea of a Super-President of the Council, I do have concerns and reservations about the proposal for an executive Presidency of the Council. I wonder if this would not lead to more of the inconsistency and the conflict with the Commission that we have at present. Surely it would be an improvement to follow the logic of what you propose for foreign and security policy, which is the virtual cloning of Mr Solana and Mr Patten, and to follow that practice in the other two areas where the Council enjoys executive authority. Why not let the Commissioner responsible chair the Council in its formations for economic policy and interior affairs? Nevertheless, despite some reserves the Parliamentary delegation in the Convention will follow the principal lines of this proposal and I look forward to future close collaboration inside the Convention with Mr Barnier and Mr Vitorino."@en1

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