EU leaders again fail to reach agreement on filling top EU posts

EU heads of state met in a special meeting of the European Council June 30, 2019 to hash out a deal on a package of nominees for new EU leadership, including the next presidents of the European Commission, Council of the EU, and European Parliament, and the High Representative of the Union for Foreign Affairs. The summit had been called after heads of state also failed to reach a consensus during the June 20 to 21 European Council Summit. The meeting will be reconvened on July 2. 

Candidates for commission president will need the support of a qualified majority in the European Council and a majority in the Parliament. The Council president and the high representative roles are decided by the Council alone. The EU treaties require that the top EU roles have a certain amount of balance regarding party, geography, and member state population size, and leaders are seeking to close the gender disparity in the top posts, as well. The European Council is under pressure to reach a decision before the new European Parliament sits for its first plenary this week; if the Parliament presidency is settled first rather than as a package deal, it will constrain the options as to who can fill the other posts. 

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