EPP chooses Manfred Weber as top candidate for European Commission president

Manfred Weber will be a favourite to take over from Jean-Claude Juncker as European Commission head, if his party earns the most seats in May's elections

Manfred Weber is now the favourite to succeed Jean-Claude Juncker as European Commission president (Photo: James Bianchi/MediaToday)
Manfred Weber is now the favourite to succeed Jean-Claude Juncker as European Commission president (Photo: James Bianchi/MediaToday)

The European People’s Party has chosen Manfred Weber as their prime candidate for next year’s European elections, making him the favourite to take over from Jean-Claude Juncker as European Commission head.

The electorate, composed of 700 delegates from Europe’s centre-right parties, voted for Weber, a German MEP who leads the EPP in the European Parliament, over Alexander Stubb, a former Finnish Prime Minister, who was the only other candidate.

Weber is now the person most likely to succeed Juncker, if the EPP wins the largest number of MEP seats in May's European Parliament elections.

The EPP is the largest group in the European Parliament, with the second-largest bloc, the Socialists & Democrats, having this week chosen current European Commission vice-president Frans Timmermans and their lead candidate for the Commission presidency.

Weber is not very well known in Germany, but it noted for being an expert on EU institutions. He has received the backing of German Chancellor Angela Merkel and head of France’s Republicans party Laurent Wauquiez.

“Thank you very much for your support, let's start a new chapter for Europe together,” he said on Twitter, once the voting results were out.

We look forward to working with Weber - Adrian Delia

Nationalist Party leader Adrian Delia said he looked forward to working with Weber and the EP towards a Europe which had people’s interests at heart.

In a statement the PN congratulated Weber, while also wishing the best for Stubb.

More in Europe

Get access to the real stories first with the digital edition

Subscribe