4th July 2014

Politics: First plenary session of the new European Parliament

The 751 newly-elected MEPs gathered in Strasbourg on 1-3 July for the first plenary session to assume their jobs. The constitutive plenary marked the beginning of the 8th European Parliament´s term since 1979 when the EP was first directly elected. The MEPs´ first task was to elect the Parliament´s president and vice-presidents. For the first time in the Parliament´s history, the same person was re-elected to be President in his second 30-month term. The MEPs elected their German colleague, chairman of the S&D group and the socialist ex-Spitzenkandidat, Martin Schulz. He received 409 votes. His nomination was part of the conservative-socialist deal on top EU posts, giving the socialists the right to nominate EP President for the first term. Mr. Schulz will be replaced by a conservative nominee in the second half of the parliamentary term. The Parliament also elected its 14 vice-presidents and 5 quaestors. Also the committees´ composition was decided on. The committees are extremely important in the huge parliament as their work is the most important input in the legislative process. The committees will elect their heads in Brussels this week (7 July). The MEPs also debated on the outcome of the June European Council and on the end of Greek EU presidency and the beginning of the Italian one. The Parliament will meet again on plenary on 16 July to elect the Commission president.

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Members of the American Chamber of Commerce in the Czech Republic