What’s Next for Von der Leyen and Lagarde in Getting Top Jobs

(Bloomberg) -- The difficult part may be over -- they’ve been chosen. But Ursula von der Leyen and Christine Lagarde still need to jump through a bunch of bureaucratic hoops before they become head of the European Commission and the European Central Bank.

Here’s a look at what’s coming up:

Von der Leyen:

  • Week of July 15 (probably on Tuesday, July 16): The European Parliament plans to vote in Strasbourg, France, on her nomination to become commission president
    • No official hearing scheduled
    • The election of the designated commission president is by an absolute majority
  • Week of Oct. 21 (probably on Tuesday, Oct. 22): the European Parliament plans to vote in Strasbourg on the whole team of commissioners
What’s Next for Von der Leyen and Lagarde in Getting Top Jobs


  • July 9: Euro-area finance ministers will formally recommend her as candidate for the ECB presidency when they meet in Brussels
  • The European Parliament as well as the ECB Governing Council then have to be consulted, but neither opinion would be binding. Lawmakers may also organize a hearing with her before weighing in
  • After that’s done, the nomination has to be confirmed again by leaders. The next scheduled summit takes place Oct. 17-18
What’s Next for Von der Leyen and Lagarde in Getting Top Jobs


Belgium’s Charles Michel already has been elected European Council president. His term starts Dec. 1 and lasts for 2 1/2 years -- it is once renewable.

The rest of the commission:

While the foreign policy chief -- Spain’s Josep Borrell -- was agreed on as part of this week’s top jobs package, the rest of the European Commission portfolios still need to be figured out. Each EU member has one commissioner and not all countries have yet to say who they are putting forward.

Here’s who’s been named so far...
  • Czech Republic: Vera Jourova (renomination, currently justice commissioner)
  • Denmark: Margrethe Vestager (renomination, currently competition commissioner)
  • Finland: Jutta Urpilainen (former finance minister in her country)
  • Hungary: Laszlo Trocsanyi (currently justice minister in his country)
  • Latvia: Valdis Dombrovskis (renomination, currently vice president for the euro and financial stability)
  • Netherlands: Frans Timmermans (renomination, currently first vice president)
  • Slovakia: Maros Sefcovic (renomination, currently vice president for energy) 
  • Between Sept. 30 and Oct. 8, the European Parliament plans to hold committee hearings in Brussels with all the individual commissioners designate
  • The committees then draw up evaluations. As parliament notes “a negative evaluation has prompted candidates in the past to withdraw from the process”

©2019 Bloomberg L.P.

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