THE deceit of the European election was summed up by posters around the continent: “Use your power. Choose who is in charge of Europe”. The votes were cast. People used their power to kick governments by supporting parties of the far right and left. But they did not choose who would run Europe.
The European Union is too complex to be run by any one body or person. Even the choice of a new president of the European Commission, the EU’s civil service, will take weeks if not months to be decided.
The European Parliament had hoped to inject direct democracy into the system by turning the elections into a contest for a sort of prime minister. Spitzenkandidaten, German for “leading candidates”, were chosen to represent the main multinational party groups.
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