The European Political Groups And Political Parties


The European Political Groups And Political Parties

About the organization of the members of European Parliament, there is a first differentiation to be done between European groups and European parties.
The members of the European Parliament organize themselves not into national delegation but into political affiliation that are known as European political groups. There are already 7 European political groups – you have a detailed explanation of each ones position and also the national parties inside them further in this guide. To form a European political group is needed that 25 elected MEPs agree on that and they are from at least 7 member states. Those who do not belong to any group make part of the Non attached members. Here you have a list of them.

Group

MEPs

eppEuropean People’s Party (EPP)

274

SDsProgressive Alliance of Socialists and Democrats (S&D)

195

ALDEeAlliance of Liberals and Democrats for Europe (ALDE)

85

greenThe Greens–European Free Alliance (Greens–EFA)

58

ecrrEuropean Conservatives and Reformists (ECR)

56

EFFDEurope of Freedom and Democracy (EFD)

33

GUEEEuropean United Left–Nordic Green Left (GUE-NGL)

35

Non-Inscrits (NI)

Inside each group are agreed common positions for every topic, law discussed in the European Parliament although the voting discipline is not as rigid as it happens into national parliaments and there is more independence. If you want to check with MEP follows more the general lines of every group you can have a look into http://www.votewatch.eu/.

On the other side, the European parties are political organizations recognized and funding by the European Union. So far there are 12 recognized Europarties which are not formed by individuals MEPs but for national parties. They do not vote as such in the European Parliament but can express their opinion by having affiliation with political groups. They try to influence the Council decision through coordination meetings between the different heads of state that belong to every party.

So, I can get a little confusing and you can ask yourself, why such difference? The answer is the the European groups are a union of individual members of the European Parliament that can follow, or not, the guidelines done at general level as we said before. The groups cannot make campaign themselves for the elections along EU and this is a task of the European parties which are a union of national political parties. The European parties, therefore, fix their priorities and policies in coordination meetings that include also the heads of state. This means that the European parties have not only influence on the Parliament but also on the Council where, nowadays the majority of the heads of states belongs to the EPP. In addition, after the Lisbon Treaty entered into force, there is the possibility that the winner European party could elect the candidate for the presidency of European Commission.

How The Members Of The Parliament Fit Into Every Political Group?

When voting in the elections, you will vote for a candidate for being a Member of the European Parliament and, later, those elected MEPs will integrate into different European political groups. We have prepared a table graph about which national party of the MEPs that are inside every European Group so when you are going to vote you can take into account their positions on the different topics that you have further on the guide. Not every European political group has members from every country and that is why some countries appear in blank.

Here you have a small summary of the MEPs by group and country

MEPs