The person selected as ‘Common Candidate’ would then be put forward as the PES candidate for the European Commission President. The measure is designed to meet the many demands for a more democratic and transparent way to designate key European Union posts. It is also hoped that it will increase interest in the election.
PES President Sergei Stanishev stated that; “The PES has debated, designed and delivered a process that is democratically open and politically credible. It will act as a rallying point around which we can gather progressive forces for the elections to the European Parliament”. He added that he was; “truly proud of the Member Parties of the PES for making this process part of the official statutes of the party. This will allow us to continue this long term commitment to democracy and transparency in the EU”.
PES Treasurer Ruairi Quinn acted as chair of the working party which guided this initiative from inception to fruition. Speaking from Dublin, the Irish Minister for Education stated that; “This is an historic achievement that the PES has reached by adopting a competitive, flexible, democratic and transparent process. It was a real privilege to be able to contribute to this measure, which, I hope, will give European people a real sense of ownership in the development of the EU”. The process was adopted by all PES Members.
Each nominee needs to be supported by 15% of PES full member parties or organisations. To reach 15%, a candidate will therefore need six Parties or organisations: one nominating her/him, five other supporting.
The PES Presidency will hold a meeting on 6 November to verify the process and announce the nominee(s).
Timetable of the PES Common Candidate process
- 1st October 2013: opening of nominations - candidacies, letters of nomination and support should be sent to the PES
- 31st October 2013: close of nominations
- 6th November 2013: PES Presidency meeting to check that all criteria are fulfilled – Official announcement of the candidates’ list
- 1st December 2013 – 31st January 2014: internal selection process within each member Party/organisation.
- February 2014: PES Election Congress, to ratify the votes on the candidate and adopt the Manifesto – Launch of the PES European election campaign
- May 2014: European Parliament Elections