With Jean-Claude Juncker, the President of the European Commission, preparing to retire from his official responsibilities by October, the anticipation regarding his potential successor are increasing. It is still not known who shall replace Juncker.
Here is a list of possible successors, official and unofficial candidates looking at the for and against for each.
Margrethe Vestager, Liberals
For – Ms. Vestager, a popular figure in the Danish political realm is the competition commissioner who spearheaded the anti-trust investigations of EU ushering in hefty fines for Apple and Google.
Against – A commission colleague has said that Ms. Vestager is not a major candidate, hence her option is non-viable.
Manfred Weber, European People’s Party
For – A promising political personality in the center-right bloc of the EU, Manfred Weber enjoys the endorsements of Angela Merkel, the German Chancellor and Sebastian Kurz, the Austrian Chancellor.
Against – With the EPP losing ground in the parliamentary elections, the Bavarian needs to win over other groups as well.
Frans Timmermans, Party of European Socialists
For – The Centre – left Labour party led by Mr. Timmermans claimed a striking victory in the Dutch elections. Being the European Commission Vice President, he helped in pushing the EU legislation to ban plastic straws.
Against – Timmermans is unpopular across Hungary and Poland for throwing challenges to the governments of the respective countries over the question of the rule of law.
Kristalina Georgieva, Chief Executive World Bank
For – Despite not being a close candidate, Ms. Georgieva has a chance as she has been lauded by European leaders for playing a crucial role in reducing the bloc’s expenditure while holding the post of budget commissioner in EU.
Against – The Bulgarian is not a candidate as yet. Also, the European parliament might place an objection to her candidacy who is not active in the European-wide campaign.
Ska Keller, the Greens
For – Kellar now commands the fourth biggest majority in the parliament. In 2014, she stood as “Spitzenkandidat” or the top candidate for the Greens. Ska Keller focusses on the environmental crisis and the issues of migrants.
Against – It could be a challenge for her to win the support of majority states. Moreover, the member states might go for bigger names.