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At its second November plenary session, Parliament is expected to vote on an own-initiative report taking stock of the May 2019 European elections, the ninth direct elections to the European Parliament since the first ones in 1979, and of the subsequent appointment of the College of Commissioners. This report makes concrete proposals to strengthen the electoral process and enhance its European dimension.

In August 2020, the two major political parties in the United States (US), the Democrats and the Republicans, formally nominated their respective candidates for the 59th US presidential election, which takes place on Tuesday, 3 November 2020. An initially crowded field of contenders in the Democratic primaries developed into a two-horse race between former US Vice-President Joe Biden and Senator Bernie Sanders, with Biden declared the Democratic nominee on 18 August. He will now contest the presidential ...

The Facebook/Cambridge Analytica case in 2018, revealing alleged misuse of personal data for political advertising, demonstrated how the underlying values of the European data protection rules are essential for democracy. The EU has recently adopted a series of additional initiatives to support free and fair elections, reflected not least in European Parliament (EP) debates and resolutions.

Trust in political institutions is a key element of representative democracies. Trust in the rule of law is also the basis for democratic participation of citizens. According to the spring 2018 Eurobarometer survey of public awareness of the EU institutions, 50 % of respondents indicated they trust the European Parliament, which represents a 34 % increase since the beginning of the 2014-2019 legislative term. A transparent political decision-making processes has become a common objective to help ...

The President of the European Commission (EC) has taken on an ever more prominent leading role within the College of Commissioners, with the increasingly presidential system eclipsing the principle of collegiate decision-making. With the European Council and European Parliament now together responsible for the appointment, the Presidency has not only become a much more politicised office, but the President has also gained greater influence vis-à-vis the other members of the Commission.

The EU’s relationship with India and the floundering bilateral trade negotiations may be reinvigorated by the results of the country’s elections for India’s lower house of parliament – the Lok Sabha – held between 7 April and 12 May 2014. The landslide victory of the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) and its leader, Narendra Modi, came at the expense of the Congress party; after being in power for all but 18 years since the country's independence in 1947, Congress obtained only 44 seats – less than 8 ...

With the EU facing an apparent democratic deficit, social media may provide a way of countering declining voter turnout. Social media allow political actors to bypass mass-media filters, influence journalists, and target messages to the young, the largest group of social media users. They can be used to organise participation in 'offline' events, and to transmit political messages through social connections. Nevertheless, whilst social media are increasingly used in elections, it may be that they ...

This note examines the challenges arising in the context of the European Elections of 2014. Drawing on the history of the constitutional evolution of the EU it turns to analyse opportunities and possible risks related to prospect of turning the European elections into personalized contest for the presidency of the European Commission.

'Europeanisation' of the 2014 EP elections

Lühitutvustus 27-06-2013

The European Parliament (EP) is the institution most often cited by EU citizens as guarantor of the representation of citizens' interests at EU level. However, elections to the EP are said to be 'second-order national elections', both regarding electoral procedure and electoral campaign topics. In order to redress this, many call for their 'Europeanisation'.

The two main candidates hailed from the two dominant political parties. 'Economic democratisation' and North Korea policy emerged as key issues. To what extent will Park curb the power of chaebols remains unclear. North Korea will present both a challenge and an opportunity to Park's presidency. Reconciliation, cooperation and peace in Northeast Asia are among Park's top priorities. Balancing between the US and China might pose a particular challenge. Voting patterns suggest that South Korea's familiar ...