Although the prime concern of MEPs has focused on Italy’s nominee as commissioner for justice, freedom and security Rocco Buttiglione, the Netherlands’ competition Commissioner-designate Neelie Kroes is also in the firing line.
Barroso will consult on Friday with European Union heads of government at the signing of the new EU constitution in Rome, after parliament’s socialist group refused to confirm a new commission in office with Buttiglione as justice Commissioner.
This followed his outraging of MEPs at his parliamentary hearing this month by referring to homosexuals as sinners.
He followed this up later with controversial comments that single mothers were ‘bad people’. His reappointment is now extremely unlikely and the resulting reshuffle could also force out Kroes who has been accused by MEPs of harbouring too many business interests.
Also, Latvia’s nominee as taxation commissioner Ingrida Udre could be a casualty, with MEPs criticising her apparent inability to properly master her brief.
Current president Romano Prodi and his existing commissioners will stay on as caretakers while the political crisis is resolved.
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