EU shock: Controversial replacement for Juncker slated by shock German poll
EU leaders picked Germany’s defence minister Ursula von der Leyen to take over from Mr Juncker after three days of messy talks to allocate the bloc’s top jobs. But according to a new ARD Deutschlandtrend survey, 56 percent of those polled do not agree that Ms von der Leyen would be a good European Commission president, while just 33 percent back her.
Ms von der Leyen is a close ally of German Chancellor Angela Merkel and a member of her Christian Democratic Union (CDU) party.
She was announced on Tuesday as the candidate to replace Mr Juncker but the appointment must be approved by the European Parliament.
Bundestag President Wolfgang Schäuble told German newspaper Augsburger Allgemeine that he supports Ms von der Leyen.
He said: “I believe that Ursula von der Leyen can become a good commission president – but I do not know whether she will be elected.”
The leaders from the EU’s 28 member states struggled to reach an agreement over who to put forward for the five roles.
Following days of wrangling, Belgian Prime Minister Charles Michel was nominated to replace European Council President Donald Tusk, while Spain’s Josep Borrell has been lined up as the bloc’s foreign policy chief.
IMF boss Christine Lagarde has been proposed to lead the European Central Bank (ECB).
And Italian politician David-Maria Sassoli was selected as the new president of the European Parliament.
But the EU has faced criticism that the nominations went on behind closed doors and that the Spitzenkandidaten process – where European political parties appoint lead candidates – was ignored.
Mr Juncker today admitted that the appointment of his successor was “not very transparent”.
ARD Deutschlandtrend polled 789 voters on July 3.
Additional reporting by Monika Pallenberg.
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