French candidate commissioner rejected

Sylvie Goulard, France’s choice to be the next head of EU industrial policy, was rejected by the EP committees on Thursday after a second hearing in which she failed to quieten doubts over her role in a jobs scandal. The rejection reflects a power struggle between MPs and French President Emmanuel Macron about who should lead the next European Commission.

Macron proposed Goulard, an experienced former French diplomat and EU lawmaker, for the post of EU internal market commissioner, responsible for European defense integration.

The center-right European People’s Party voted against Goulard, while the Greens, the far-left and a grouping of far-right parties also decided against her in a committee meeting.

Goulard had the support of Macron’s liberal group in the parliament, known as Renew Europe, but needed two-thirds support from MEPs in a parliament fragmented between pro- and anti-EU groups since elections to the assembly last May.

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