The next EU chief, Ursula von der Leyen, says he agrees to a new Brexit delay
The next EU leader Ursula von der Leyen says the Brexit for a & # 39; good reason & # 39; may be postponed, such as a general election or a second referendum
- Ursula von der Leyen tries to convince MEPs to vote for her
- Secret vote will take place tomorrow with Mrs von der Leyen, who needs a majority
- If she is assisted by MEPs, she will replace Jean-Claude Juncker on November 1
- She said she would agree on a new Brexit delay if there was a & # 39; good reason & # 39; is to do this
Jean-Claude Juncker & # 39; s possible replacement as President of the European Commission has said she is open to a new Brexit delay – but only if it is for a & # 39; good reason & # 39; is going.
Ursula von der Leyen said in a letter to MEPs that if she is chosen as Mr Juncker's successor, she will strive for an & # 39; ambitious and strategic partnership & # 39; with the UK.
In an important impulse for Remain campaigners, she said she would support a further extension after the current deadline of October 31.
But she also stressed that the withdrawal agreement with Theresa May is still the & # 39; best and only possible deal for an ordered withdrawal & # 39; is.
Her comments on the finality of the current deal emphasize the strength of the opposition Boris Johnson is likely to face and his plan to renegotiate the conditions for the UK's separation from the bloc if he becomes prime minister next week.
The Brexit has already been delayed twice since the original deadline of March 29.
Urusal von der Leyen will learn tomorrow whether she will replace Wull with Jean-Claude Juncker as President of the European Commission
Mrs von der Leyen is trying to persuade MEPs to support her candidacy and has told them in a letter that she would agree with a new Brexit delay
Mrs von der Leyen was chosen by the leaders of the 28 EU Member States to replace Mr Juncker.
But she needs the support of a majority of Members of the European Parliament in a secret vote that takes place tomorrow to become the first female president of the European Commission.
The German defense minister today used a letter to socialist and liberal members of the European Parliament to make a series of promises, as she tried to convince them to support her appointment.
She closed her letter with a long passage about her Brexit vision when she said: & # 39; when I am elected, I am ready to pave the way for the ambitious and strategic cooperation we want to build with the UK .
& # 39; If more time is needed and there are good reasons, I will support a further extension if there are good reasons. & # 39;
Mrs. von der Leyen spoke to her & # 39; regret & # 39; that the UK had decided to leave the EU in June 2016, but added: & # 39; I fully respect this decision. & # 39;
& # 39; The withdrawal agreement with the United Kingdom is the best and only deal possible for an ordered withdrawal, & # 39; she said, according to a copy of the letter published by The Independent.
Mrs von der Leyen needs the support of an absolute majority of Members of the European Parliament to be installed in the five-year post.
There are concerns among some high figures in Brussels that she would not be able to reach that majority, given that she came out of the blue to be the candidate chosen by the EU28 after countless other options were rejected by leaders.
If she is rejected by MEPs, EU leaders will be forced to return to the drawing board – an unattractive prospect since it took three days to settle compromise discussions with Mrs von der Leyen.
Her comments on the possibility of postponing the Brexit will be welcomed by pro-EU groups in the UK, suggesting that a No Deal Brexit is not necessarily inevitable.
Her use of the expression & # 39; good reasons & # 39; will probably also be interpreted as a second referendum or a general election to break the Brexit deadlock.
Although her comments give a good indication of the future direction of the EU, it will ultimately be up to Mr Juncker and the leaders of the EU Member States to decide whether there should still be a Brexit delay.
Mrs von der Leyen has to take over Mr Juncker on 1 November, the day after the current Brexit deadline.
Mrs von der Leyer, pictured together with the President of the European Council Donald Tusk, has maintained the EU position that the current Brexit deal cannot be changed
Both Johnson and his leading rival Jeremy Hunt have pledged to renegotiate the current Brexit deal.
But Johnson is the overwhelming favorite to win the keys to Downing Street with Mrs. May's successor to be named on July 24.
He vowed to deliver Brexit with or without a deal on October 31 & # 39; do or die & # 39 ;.
However, Brussels has so far been freezing about the idea of making changes to the current divorce agreement.
In the meantime, Mr. Johnson's relapse option of a No Deal Brexit is faced with fierce opposition in the House of Commons amid the question of whether he can actually get an untidy split of the block by Parliament.
Stephen Barclay, the Brexit secretary, reportedly told Michel Barnier five times last Tuesday that she met Mrs. May's deal and said that the Irish back limit should be removed from the border for an agreement to have any chance of be approved by a majority of Members of Parliament.
EU sources told The Sun that Mr. Barclay seemed to be using the meeting as a & # 39; job interview & # 39; for a place in Mr Johnson's future government, because he apparently tried to promise the EU to sound out the proposals of the leaders of the Tory.
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