This was published under the 2010 to 2015 Conservative and Liberal Democrat coalition government
Statement on this afternoon’s meeting between Prime Minister David Cameron and the President of the European Council Herman Van Rompuy.
A Number 10 spokesperson said:
The Prime Minister held talks with Herman Van Rompuy, President of the European Council, at Downing Street this afternoon, ahead of this week’s European Council.
The talks were full and frank. The Prime Minister explained that his view would not change. Simply accepting the ‘Spitzenkandidaten’ process would be an irreversible step which would hand power from the European Council to the European Parliament, with the risk that the European Parliament would dictate the European Union’s agenda. It would also politicise the European Commission and compromise its exercise of its important regulatory functions.
The Prime Minister also underlined the UK’s cross-party opposition to the nomination of Jean-Claude Juncker as President of the European Commission. It would end the decades-long practice of always finding a candidate by consensus. And it would ignore the clear pro-change and pro-reform message delivered by European voters in the recent European Parliament elections.
The Prime Minister asked President Van Rompuy to prepare the European Council for a vote on Mr Juncker’s nomination, should the European Council choose to depart from a consensus-led approach when it meets this week. President Van Rompuy agreed to work through how a vote would proceed.