The European Parliament is a globalist institution of the European Union. Its consists of 705 members serving five-year terms from each of the 28 EU member-states. The number of representatives per country is roughly determined by population, but the exact numbers were negotiated in treaties.
Despite claiming to represent 375 million constituents, the parliament has no armed forces of its own and depends on the U.S. taxpayer and NATO for its defense.
Its revenues come from member states, with Germany, France and Italy providing about half, and the rest of the 25 members paying the other half. Its expenditures are said be spent on "Growth", "Natural Resources" (largely agricultural subsidies not distributed equitably), "Administration" or bureaucracy and salaries, "Foreign aid", "Security and citizenship" (1.64%), and "Compensations" (.003%), in that order of priority.
The parliament shares "equal" budget authority with "the Council", which is not "the Council of the European Union"; the Council of the European Union and the European Council are two distinct bodies of the European Union. "The Council" consists of 28 member states whose presidency rotates every six months. In the case of a budgetary disagreement between the "equal" members of parliament and "the Council", the parliament is said to have the upper hand in this "equal" division of power.
The responsibilities of the parliament include regulating the budget of the EU and monitoring the actions of the European Commission. The legislature's power over budgeting is not complete, however, with the much criticized farm-subsidies under the Common Agricultural Policy (which takes up £60 billion [$120billion] of the budget) being negotiated instead by ministers outside of the democratic process. Currently, 80% of the subsidies go to just 20% of farms across the EU.
Parliament's powers have gradually grown with the entry into force of the Single European Act (1986), the Maastricht Treaty (1993) and the Treaty of Amsterdam (1999). Parliament shares decision-making power on an equal footing with the Council in many areas under the Community Pillar to which the "co-decision procedure" applies. The European Parliament is one of the two branches with budgetary authority – the Council is the other. The signature of the EP president brings the overall EU budget into effect.
The European Parliament also plays a role in the process of selecting the President and other members of the Commission. The European Council's nomination of the President is subject to approval by the Parliament. The EP holds U.S.-style public hearings of Commission nominees before taking a formal vote to approve the nomination of the Commission as a body. Parliament has the power to censure the entire Commission, but not to dismiss individual Commissioners.
The organization is based in both Strasbourg, France (for official legislative procedure) and in Brussels, Belgium (for unofficial or negotiative stages). While Brussels is the main seat for most other European Union offices, European law requires that the parliament sits 12 times a year in Strasbourg, which is also the seat of the other legislative body of the Union; namely the Council of Europe. The cost of having two seats for the parliament is significantly higher than were there a single seat, with an estimated price tag of €203 million of extra travel expenses. This extra cost, due to the perceived bureaucracy of the EU, has led to large amounts of criticism for the organization.
It began as the Common Assembly of the European Coal and Steel Community (ECSC), a consortium of energy and steel interests. It was a consultative assembly of 78 appointed energy and steel lobbyists and regulators drawn from the national parliaments of member states, having no legislative powers. Even at this point, the assembly met in both Brussels and Strasbourg, and was criticized for its bureaucracy.
The members in the parliament are usually members of pan-European political parties, with the domestic parties of member states usually aligned with larger European groups.
An election to the European Parliament was held between 23 and 26 May 2019.
- Great Britain
Brexit Party 29 seats Liberal Democrats 16 seats Labour Party 10 seats Green Party (UK) 7 seats Conservative Party 4 seats Scottish National Party 3 seats Plaid Cymru 1 seat
Northern Ireland results to follow
- European Parliament : People power for Europe - International Herald Tribune, December 12, 2003
- EU loophole allows city ‘farmers’ to reap millions in subsidy harvest - The Times, March 13, 2007
- Time to come clean on EU farm subsidies
- Wagner's Prigozhin gives bloody sledgehammer to EU for terror designation, By JERUSALEM POST STAFF Published: NOVEMBER 24, 2022.
- Strasbourg unfit for EU session - BBC News, August 20, 2008
- Breeze in Parliament - TIME, January 29, 1973