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Delors Commission The Commission headed by Jacques Delors was seen as giving the Community a sense of direction and dynamism. Delors rescued the European Community from the doldrums. He arrived when Europessimism was at its worst. Although he was a little-known former French finance minister, he breathed life and hope into the EC and into the dispirited Brussels Commission.
In his first term, from to , he rallied Europe to the call of the single market, and when appointed to a second term he began urging Europeans toward the far more ambitious goals of economic, monetary and political union".
These frauds were revealed by an internal auditor, Paul van Buitenen.
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Due to the opposition Barroso was forced to reshuffle his team before taking office. As a result of the increase in the number of states, the Amsterdam Treaty triggered a reduction in the number of Commissioners to one per state, rather than two for the larger states. Under the Treaty of Nice , the first Commission to be appointed after the number of member states reached 27 would have to be reduced to "less than the number of Member States".
The exact number of Commissioners was to be decided by a unanimous vote of the European Council and membership would rotate equally between member states. Following the accession of Romania and Bulgaria in January , this clause took effect for the next Commission.
Membership would rotate equally and no member state would have more than one Commissioner.
However, the treaty was rejected by voters in Ireland in with one main concern being the loss of their Commissioner. Hence a guarantee given for a rerun of the vote was that the Council would use its power to amend the number of Commissioners upwards.
Juncker appointed his previous campaign director and head of the transition team, Martin Selmayr , as his chief of cabinet. During the Juncker presidency Selmayr has been described as "the most powerful EU chief of staff ever. This is in contrast to the Council , which represents governments, the Parliament , which represents citizens , the Economic and Social Committee , which represents organised civil society, and the Committee of the Regions , which represents local and regional authorities.
However, the Council was allowed to withdraw these powers, exercise them directly, or impose conditions on their use. However, it is the Commission that currently holds executive powers over the European Union. Only the Commission can make formal proposals for legislation: In the other fields the Council and Parliament are able to request legislation; in most cases the Commission initiates the basis of these proposals.
This monopoly is designed to ensure coordinated and coherent drafting of EU law. It has put forward a large number of regulations based on a " precautionary principle ". This means that pre-emptive regulation takes place if there is a credible hazard to the environment or human health: This is opposed to weighting regulations for their effect on the economy.
Thus, the Commission often proposes stricter legislation than other countries. Due to the size of the European market this has made EU legislation an important influence in the global market. Some EU states at that time did not even have a crime against shipping toxic waste leading to the Commissioners Franco Frattini and Stavros Dimas to put forward the idea of "ecological crimes".
Their right to propose criminal law was challenged in the European Court of Justice but upheld. It does this through the member states or through its agencies.
In adopting the necessary technical measures, the Commission is assisted by committees made up of representatives of member states and of the public and private lobbies  a process known in jargon as " comitology ". In particular the Commission has a duty to ensure the treaties and law are upheld, potentially by taking member states or other institutions to the Court of Justice in a dispute. In this role it is known informally as the "guardian of the treaties". It is also usual for the President to attend meetings of the G8.
The Commission is composed of a college of " Commissioners " of 28 members, including the President and vice-presidents.
Even though each member is appointed by a national government, one per state, they do not represent their state in the Commission. The power of a Commissioner largely depends upon their portfolio, and can vary over time.
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For example, the Education Commissioner has been growing in importance, in line with the rise in the importance of education and culture in European policy-making. If not, the European Council shall propose another candidate within one month.
In as with , the Lisbon Treaty was not in force and Barroso was not "elected" by the Parliament, but rather nominated by the European Council; in any case, the centre-right parties of the EU pressured for a candidate from their own ranks.
In the end, a centre-right candidate was chosen: However the more capable the candidate is, the more likely the Commission President will assign them a powerful portfolio, the distribution of which is entirely at his discretion. If members of the team are found to be too inappropriate, the President must then reshuffle the team or request a new candidate from the member state or risk the whole Commission being voted down.
As Parliament cannot vote against individual Commissioners there is usually a compromise whereby the worst candidates are removed but minor objections are put aside so the Commission can take office.
Following their appointment, the President appoints a number of Vice-Presidents the High Representative is mandated to be one of them from among the commissioners. For the most part, the position grants little extra power to Vice-Presidents, except the first Vice-President who stands in for the President when he is away.
However, individual Commissioners, by request of the Council or Commission, can be compelled to retire on account of a breach of obligation s and if so ruled by the European Court of Justice Art. Political styles[ edit ] The Barroso Commission took office in late after being delayed by objections from the Parliament, which forced a reshuffle.
In the Commission increased from 25 to 27 members with the accession of Romania and Bulgaria who each appointed their own Commissioners. With the increasing size of the Commission, Barroso adopted a more presidential style of control over the college, which earned him some criticism.
This has increased with the creation of the President of the European Council under the Treaty of Lisbon. The Commission is divided into departments known as Directorates-General DGs that can be likened to departments or ministries. Furthermore, the DGs can exercise considerable control over a Commissioner with the Commissioner having little time to learn to assert control over their staff.
In addition to these, "external staff" e. Contractual agents, detached national experts, young experts, trainees etc.
The single largest DG is the Directorate-General for Translation , with a strong staff, while the largest group by nationality is Belgian Such a situation is unique in the world.
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A release often goes through several stages of drafting which emphasises the role of the Commission and is used "for justifying the EU and the commission" increasing their length and complexity. Where there are multiple departments involved a press release can also be a source of competition between areas of the Commission and Commissioners themselves. There is one journalist covering EU news for Latvia and none for Lithuania.
Although there has been a worldwide cut in journalists, the considerable press releases and operations such as Europe by Satellite and EuroparlTV leads many news organisations to believe they can cover the EU from these source and news agencies.
For the first time, the European Commission proposed that medical preparedness for CBRN attack threats is a high priority. The Commission also operates out of numerous other buildings in Brussels and Luxembourg.