James Crisp. Freelance journalist in Brussels.

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British influence will wane in new EU Parliament

election(27 May) The UK Independence Party’s victory, the loss of all but one Liberal Democrat MEP, the weakening of the Conservatives and the Labour Party’s performance in local and European elections point to a waning British influence in Brussels.

Although UKIP came second in the previous European elections (2009), the other parties’ representatives held important positions in pivotal policy areas and played a significant role in shaping legislation. Britons elected 73 MEPs. 24 of them are from UKIP, 11 more than were elected in 2009.

With expectations of a possible grand coalition, which would freeze out UKIP, distrust of its politicans by traditional parties, and UKIP’s terrible record of participating in the parliamentary process, that is unlikely to translate into a real say on policy.

“We don’t go there to make the EU better, more powerful, and help it to pass more laws. We go there to find out what it’s up to, and let you know,” UKIP boasts in its manifesto.

Pieter Cleppe, head of think tank Openeurope, said, “The vote shows that the people want reform but it’s ironic that it has in a way weakened the reformist voice.”

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This entry was posted on November 3, 2014 by in European elections 2014, Journalism, UK politics and tagged , , , .

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