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European Parliament – anti-awards for MEPs from the Politico portal – who received them?

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At the end of the term of the European Parliament, Politico awarded sixteen anti-awards to deputies with “special” contributions to European legislation.

Of the 705 MEPs serving in the currently ending ninth term of the European Parliament, the Politico website selected a dozen or so who “stood out from the rest” over the last five years, e.g. by participating in scandals, having problems with the law or having almost no participation in the work of the institution.

The biggest absentee

The “winner” of the anti-awards and the biggest absentee of the last term was the Greek far-right MEP Ioannis Lagos, who spent more than half of his mandate behind bars. In 2020, the politician was sentenced to 13 years in prison for leading a criminal organization, i.e. the extreme right-wing Golden Dawn party, which is considered a neo-Nazi, which he co-founded and represented in the European Parliament. Lagos was arrested in April 2021, when the European Parliament lifted his immunity. Interestingly, as reported by Politico, the Greek politician still performs his duties from his cell, sending questions to the EC, submitting legislative amendments, and even voting (this was made possible by the remote voting system introduced by the EP during the pandemic). However, Lagos inevitably did not take part in most of the roll-call votes during the plenary sessions, earning the title of the largest absentee of the term.

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Ioannis LagosThe European Parliament

The biggest loser

The title of the biggest loser went to Dutch right-wing MEP Marcel de Graaff, who lost 71%. votes in which he participated. The analysis conducted by Politico shows that de Graaff, for whom this was the second MEP mandate in his career, did not submit a single amendment to laws during the last term of the European Parliament, but openly supported Vladimir Putin in his invasion of Ukraine, and was also a permanent a guest of pro-Russian media such as Voice of Europe, which was recently recognized by the Czech and Belgian services as openly promoting Kremlin propaganda.

The worst boss

The worst boss was the MEP from Luxembourg, Monica Semedo (Renew), who was punished twice by the European Parliament for harassment of subordinates and psychological violence during her mandate. As part of her punishment, the MEP lost her allowances worth a total of PLN 8,000. euro.

Monica SemedoThe European Parliament

The most shiny gift

The award for the “shiniest gift” from Politico was given to French MEP Nathalie Loiseau (Renew), who in 2023 admitted that she received two small, 24-carat gold-plated decorative cups and two engraved spoons as a gift from the Indian Parliament. Moreover, during her visit to India, Loiseau received an ornate, hand-finished book of the Indian constitution from the local authorities. Under EU rules, MEPs should refrain from any gifts worth more than EUR 150. These provisions were made even more stringent after the Katargate corruption scandal and oblige politicians to report any gifts they receive.

The biggest rebel

The Czech far-right MEP Ivan David was considered the biggest rebel of the term, voting 4.4 thousand times, i.e. 41%. cases, he voted against the position of his parliamentary political group, Identity and Democracy (ID). According to Politico, this puts him at the head of the biggest rebels in the European Parliament opposing their political groups.

Grand Inquisitor

The Greek right-wing MEP Emmanouil Fragkos was hailed as the EP's grand inquisitor. He sent a total of 344 written written questions by name to the European Commission and other institutions, which is an average of one question every five days. Some of Fragkos' questions to the EU concerned Greece's national policy, from goat farming to traffic problems in Athens.

The best winger

The title of best winger was awarded to Belgian liberal Oliver Chastel, who supported his parliamentary colleagues with 14.4 thousand votes. corrections. This is more signatures than any other MEP. Chastel submitted only 221 of his own amendments. As he explained to Politico, “it is important to support the work of my colleagues if it is consistent with my political goals.”

European parliamentPAP/EPA

Lone wolf

The title of lone wolf was awarded to Margarita de la Pisa Carrion, an MEP from the far-right Spanish Vox party, who unsuccessfully tried to change legislative packages she did not like by introducing amendments of her own making. She reported the most, over six thousand. amendments signed with his own name – more than any other EP member – and only 2.8 thousand together with other politicians.

Talker

The anti-chatterbox award went to the head of the Social Democrat faction in the European Parliament, Spanish MEP Iratxe García Perez, who delivered the longest-sounding speeches in the European Parliament. According to the Brussels portal, their total length was over 96.2 thousand km. words, which is as many as an average-length novel. For comparison, Manfred Weber, the head of the largest faction in the European Parliament, the European People's Party, took only seventh place in this category.

Invisible

The title of the invisible was awarded to German MEP Nico Semsrott from the Greens, who took part in parliamentary votes, but during the entire term he submitted only two registered questions to the EC, did not co-create any of the laws or participate in the work on any of them, and during the plenary sessions he appeared only four times. The former satirist spent his time in Brussels making fun of the European Parliament.

“X Factor”

The “X factor” award was given to another Vox politician, MEP Hermann Tertsch, who is the most active MEP on the X platform (formerly Twitter). Tertsch has posted over 162.5 thousand posts in five years. entries, which gives an average of 119 posts a day or one entry every 12 minutes – Politico calculated.

Hermann TertschThe European Parliament

Generation Z's chosen one

Meanwhile, a French far-right politician, 28-year-old Jordan Bardella, has been hailed as the chosen one of Generation Z, mainly for posting videos on TikTok in which he raps or drinks wine. Bardella is followed by over a million users on the platform, although he only posts an average of seven videos a month.

The worst guests

One of the anti-awards went not so much to the politician but to the nation. Qatari diplomats involved in the corruption scandal in the European Parliament, when it turned out that some MEPs received bribes for voting in line with Qatar's interests, were considered the worst guests of the European Parliament.

The shortest internship

The distinction for the shortest internship went to Scottish MEP Heather Anderson, who came to Brussels in January 2020. She had to leave a few days later because Great Britain had just left the EU. She held office for a total of four days.

The wildest exit

The departure from the European Parliament of the Hungarian Fidesz MEP and Viktor Orban's confidant, Jozsef Szajer, was hailed as the wildest decision. The politician became famous when it was revealed that he took part in an orgy, from which he tried to escape by sliding down a gutter with a backpack that also contained drugs. Everything happened during the pandemic, and Szajer was detained by the police. He resigned.

Jozsef SzajerShutterstock

PE brand ambassador

Two people were honored in this category.

Eva Kaili, a Greek MEP, became infamous for her involvement in the Katargate scandal. Accused of corruption, money laundering and participation in a criminal organization that accepted bribes from countries such as Qatar and Morocco, Kaili spent three months in custody. The politician denies involvement in the scandal. He is currently awaiting trial.

Eva KailiThe European Praliament

Politico also mentioned the head of the European Parliament, Roberta Metsola, on its list – although in a positive light. As noted by the portal, Metsola was the youngest ever president of Parliament who planned to modernize the institution, but her term was overshadowed by scandals such as Katargate.

Main photo source: The European Parliament



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