The head of the European People’s Party (EPP) in the European Parliament bluntly warned a Polish member of his group to drop a challenge to European Council President Donald Tusk — or face expulsion.
“Donald Tusk is the only EPP candidate for president of the European Council,” the group leader, Manfred Weber, declared in a sternly-worded statement Sunday. “He enjoys unanimous support from the entire EPP party family.”
Tusk, a former Polish prime minister, is overwhelmingly favored to be re-elected for a second two-and-a-half year term at a summit meeting of EU leaders in Brussels this week. But back home, the Polish government is controlled by his political rivals who not only refused to support him for re-election but put forward MEP Jacek Saryusz-Wolski as a challenger, even as support for Tusk solidified.
In his statement, Weber slammed Warsaw for pursuing a domestic political vendetta in the European arena.
“It is symptomatic that the Polish government once again pursues only a Polish domestic policy agenda and has completely abandoned any constructive ambition at European level,” Weber said. “Every further attack on Donald Tusk will only jeopardize Polish interests in Europe.”
As for Saryusz-Wolski, Weber said that the EPP group’s “deciding bodies” would consider his fate later this week. “If he should maintain his candidacy for the post of European Council President, he will be excluded from the EPP Group,” Weber said.