At The American Conservative, Bill Wirtz calls Ursula von der Leyen the perfect candidate for the position of president of the European Commission because she is “Entirely lacking in concrete opinions.” Wirtz says von der Leyen is already being pushed around by EU progressives. He writes (abridged):
On Tuesday, the European Parliament approved Ursula von der Leyen to be the new president of the European Commission, the EU’s effective executive branch. She will become the first woman to hold the post, and the least popular from the get-go: she netted a majority of only nine votes (383) over of the necessary 374.
von der Leyen is the perfect candidate for the position. Entirely lacking in concrete opinions, she will prove perfectly flexible to the preferences of the Eurocrats in the Berlaymont, the European Commission building that manages more than 30,000 bureaucrats.
Moreover, like Jean-Claude Juncker, she arrives in Brussels with a record of negligence in her country of origin. Whereas Juncker was accused of failing in his duty to inform the Luxembourg Parliament of illegal wiretapping by the intelligence service, von der Leyen was denounced for mismanagement. In October 2018, when she was still Germany’s minister of defense, she admitted that her department had made mistakes in awarding contracts to external consultants, amounting to several hundred million euros.
In an effort to please the environmentalists, von der Leyen started her first speech by talking about climate change. She suggested reducing EU emissions by 50 percent, “if not 55 percent,” before 2050. Planting trees alone won’t do it, which is why she wants to tackle diesel and air travel, and create tougher emissions trading standards and carbon taxes. So if you were thinking about taking a flight to Europe, or road-tripping by car, you’d be advised to do that sooner rather than later.
How exactly all of this will be paid for remains a mystery. Von der Leyen talks of a green investment bank as a part of a “European green deal” (sound familiar?), which would “trigger investments in the height of 1 trillion [sic] euros”.
Von der Leyen is used to giving in to the Left anyway. Back in Berlin, she was part of the government of Chancellor Angela Merkel, which has not made any serious free market reforms, continues unaffordable social transfers, and massively subsidizes the alternative energy market, resulting in increased electricity prices. So much so that the European Commission says that Germany had the highest household electricity prices in Europe in 2017.
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