Commission XVIII Candidate's Debate
The studio in Europolis was nearly filled to capacity. A few empty seats were dotted about here and there, but all in all audience turnout was fairly good. Perhaps the presence of an actual competition for seats had encouraged more people to attend than the last time around, where every candidate was guaranteed a seat. This time, the eight candidates represented a genuine competition, where each of them would have to fight hard for every vote. The debates had traditionally been the starting gun for the intense media blitz that followed each commission election, where the candidates introduced, or in many cases reaffirmed, their beliefs and positions to the voters. It was unlikely the candidates eighteenth commission would be particularly different, especially with the entirely new batch of candidates.
Sitting in the centre of the large table on the studio's dais was the host, surrounded on both sides by four commission candidates. He began by introducing them.
- Eric Hitchens (UEC), hoping to bear the UEC banner in Commission XVIII, Hitchens hails from the Empire of Inimicus.
- Craig Kielburger (Ind.), Kielburger represents the first candidate put forward by the new member state of Poretos, running on an independent ticket.
- Jean-Marie L'Arc (Ind.), also running as an independent, L'Arc is the only female candidate this time around and is also from a new member state, namely Deutschia.
- Raul Morland (Ind.), Morland is hoping to become the first Commissioner elected from Havvenskar and joins most of the other candidates in running as an independent.
- Maloulay Piszckoszi (Ind.) Hailed by his supporters as "the ultimate commissioner", while decried as nothing more than a "greatest hits compilation" by his detractors, Piszckoszi of Angleter is keen to carve a distinct image and platform in the election, and is also running as an independent.
- Ben Reiher (Ind.), looking to become Prussia's first elected Commissioner, Reiher is said by some to have ambitions for the Premiership. He too is campaigning as an independent.
- Barney Stinsons (Ind.), describing himself as an "independent communist", Stinson is well known in Groot Belgie and, like several other candidates, hopes to become the first commissioner from his home nation.
- Lucas Suarez (S&D), his domestic party's representative to the S&D, Suarez is one of only two candidates running on behalf of an established europarty. If elected, he would become the first S&D commissioner since Marie Rivas won her seat over a year ago.
Now, the rules of the debate:
- Questions to be posed to the candidates must be sent to yours truly, i.e. me.
- Be sure to specify who each question comes from when you send it to me, along with where they live (be as specific as you want), and their occupation.
- Questions may be submitted anonymously.
- The debate moderator (AKA me) reserves the right to reject any question if I feel I have legitimate grounds to do so.
- Pose questions to an individual candidate, or to the whole group, whichever takes your fancy.
- Be as biased or as unbiased as you like in your question.
- Only myself and the Commission candidates may be allowed to participate in the debate.
I'd now like to invite candidates to make their opening statements.
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A tall woman first takes the stage...
Good evening Europolis, and welcome! I expect very few of you will know of me; I am Jean-Marie L'Arc of Her Holy Realm of Deutschia. Indeed, that is because for decades, Deutschia has had to isolate itself from the rest of the European Union, due to internal strife. But now that there is peace across the land unified under Her Glorious Reign, by the Holy Decree of Mother Zerthea Wooo, it is time for Deutschia to carve a place in the lore of the European Union - and that is why we are open for business.
First off, I would like to thank the outgoing Commission for their service. Under their leadership, they have allowed Deutschia to comfortably assimilate into the region. However, they have graciously decided not to run again to allow for new blood - and new blood is exactly what you will get with Deutschia.
As we are new to the scene, Deutschia has no alliances or disputes with other nations. Fear not of preferential treatment to your neighbours nor biased treatment against you. I guarantee an open mind and impartiality in all decisions. I run as an independent - you will find no advancement of partisan politics from this candidate. I will fight for the benefit of the region, instead of the benefit of any party.
Additionally, as the sole female candidate, you are already guaranteed a male-dominated Commission. I will provide an alternative voice to all discussions. Women are well-known for being better multi-taskers, as well as being more passionate and more likely to take the initiative.
Despite our relative inexperience, Deutschia has been much more active than some of the other candidates' nations. One need only look at the Regional Noticeboard - Deutschia has not appeared from nowhere at the start of the elections. Do you recall the last Zombie War? Deutschia cured at least seven other nations despite having small Cure Missiles. I do recall the nation of Poretos also participating heavily in the last Zombie War - the other nations I am not so sure.
To the other candidates, I welcome that so many have stepped forward in service of the region. I will harness and amplify your enthusiasm on the Commission.
To the rest of the region, I implore you to give me a chance. Let me prove myself in service to the region and for the betterment of all. Thank you!
Lady Jean-Marie L'Arc
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Eric Hitchens was seen with an odd expression on his face when Deutschia's candidate mentioned a zombie war. Nevertheless, he took to the stage after her, and delivered his first ever European Commission Debate opening speech:
"Good day, Europolis. Just like the previous speaker and most - if not all- candidates on this stage today, it is the first time I have stood as a European Commission candidate. However, I definitely am not new to European politics, nor to the Commission. I was, and still am, a close friend of Sir Barrington, the Commissioner from Inimicus who served in three Commissions. I have been his advisor, consultant, and secretary since he entered European politics, and as such have built up the necessary experience to compete for a spot in Commission XVIII.
Before I continue, however, I would first of all like to thank the previous Commission (or at least, the few members who were actually active) for their services to Europe. I have witnessed first-hand how hard being a Commissioner is, and I deeply respect anyone who has taken up the job. Also, I would like to thank our Halsbergian presenter for hosting today's debate. However, I did not come here to thank everyone, however important a virtue gratitude may be.
I am very proud to be here, but also very anxious and nervous, and the reason I have been nervous is quite simple: it is because this election matters to me. It matters to me greatly. It's not a joke, it's not a game. I genuinely believe that I can lead Europe to a brighter future. And therefore it is important for me to try and marshall my facts as well as I can to explain why I think that.
There has been some considerable controversy surrounding Inimician Commission candidates, it cannot be denied. I, however, am not here to slander insults at previous Commissioners, nor to be asked why I am a racist, vile bigot by my own mother. No, I am here to represent sane, common-sense policies of a tolerant and balanced nature, no extremism or racism."-He seemed to give the candidate from Havvenskar a quick look-"A laissez-faire attitude to the economy, although not afraid to take hard measures when the financial aspect of the EU does go pear-shaped. A healthy attitude to international conflicts, which we have unfortunately seen a lot of lately: diplomatic means should always come first in cases of war or tensions, but if all-out conflict like we've seen in the war between my own country and Rimroth, and the Western Sahara crisis, cannot be evaded, we should not be afraid to send peacekeeping forces into the area.
Of course, this opening statement cannot contain all my plans, but I will be more than happy to answer any questions the audience might have. I am not one for bragging or boasting, but I am sure I am the most experienced and suitable candidate for Commission XVIII. Give me the opportunity, and I promise you I will deliver. Thank you."
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Raul Morland walked to the stage after Eric Hitchens and starts talking:
"Goddag Europolis, citizens of the European Union and future colleagues. My name is Raul Morland. I'm new to European politics because Havvenskar only joined the European Union not a long while ago. I am not only honoured to be here, but also proud. Proud to represent my nation, and proud of getting a chance of serving the European Union.
I would like to start with thanking the previous commission for letting Havvenskar enter the European Union and guaranteeing a future of international cooperation.
Havvenskar does not have any disputes with other nations and has therefore a clean slate, so to speak. Therefore, Havvenskar is unbiased to other nations in Commission matters, if I get chosen of course. I want to get the best out of this commission, and get it to make the European Union an even better place than it already is. I am actually quite nervous, because the European Commissioners have got such a large responsibility, but I feel that I stand op to this challenge, and I hope others think the same.
I want to wish the other competitors the best of luck. I know our new Commission is in good hands, even if I do not get included."
Craig had been preparing this speech for the last few weeks, it was the only part he could truly rehearse. However the mention of a zombie war forced him to completely lose his train of thought. But if he had learnt anything from life it was never let anyone realise that you are confused and he wasn't going to let it happen now.
Good day everyone, what we see today is the importance of European Politics and everything our nations stand for. Democracy, freedom and Justice, for all an not the few. Something that I hold dearly to my heart. I'd like to thank all the informed and engaged voters in this hall, at home and at work, you embody the importance of this union.
Although I, as a Citizen of Poretos have not held this passport very long
_Craig waved his European Passport in his hand emphasising the movement as he did it. _
This passport represents what I have fought for, hoped for even gone as far to pray for . Nations United. Nations working together. Nations improving themselves and the region for the benefit all. I Envy my compatriot Eric from Inimicus, he has been a part of what we all should hope to be a part of, a active citizen of the European Union.
I feel this is something we should treasure. So your probably wondering why this is important to you? Because I am desperate to protect, improve and make our Union. Although I am a relatively new compared with a few candidates.
_Craig nodded towards the candidates of Inimicus, Prussia and Groot -Belgie _
I still bring the same values,ethos and wisdom to the role, even if I am inexperienced in the Commission,I will make it my duty to stand for everything that the Union stands for. I will make it my duty to serve every citizen of the Union. I will make it my duty to honour the commitments I make to everyone of you.
_Craig calmly sat down but very quickly reached for his glass of water with his hand shaking after his first speech for Commission Elections _
Maloulay stood to speak.
Good evening, all. I'm Maloulay Piszckoszi. My country needs no introduction, but perhaps I do. I've served in the European wing of the Angleteric diplomatic service for the last 22 years, so I'm not a member of any political class. But I do know Europe. And I think we need a Europe that's fit for the future. Recently, our leaders have failed to build on the successes of the past, on the work of giants from all political persuasions, such as Moulay Ismail and Maleeka Liszckoszi. Look at our membership - we've dipped below 100 member states for the first time since, what, 2011? We've been in a continuous decline, the longest and steepest we've ever had, basically since the tragic death of Colleen Bennet. We need a recruitment network that's fit for 2015.
Look also at our Europarties. Some are little more than shell corporations. Some are just moribund. Even the glitzy new party is all style and no substance - there's nothing there, there's nothing there, what is there there? What is there? There's no movement, there's nothing! No council bills, no candidates. Europarties should be laboratories for ideas, and we're missing that. As an independent, I feel I'm well-placed to work with Europarties to identify problems and revive that aspect to our regional politics. To give us a regional politics that's fit for 2015.
I shan't speak much about economics, for I'm not an economist, and what's more, I can only praise the work in that field of recent Commissioners, in particular Eric Pickles. Indeed, I would consider him the standout Commissioner of the last couple of years. But international relations in this region are failing. I think it's unfair to say we've currently got the worst Defence Commissioner ever, but I would say that we need to slap some sense into nations. We've taken leave of our senses - the slightest transgression now seems like it could spark a major European war. Let's have a region with the level-headedness, peace, and harmony that's fit for 2015.
So that's why I'm doing this. And what's more, I believe that *points at himself* you can trust this man to give you a region fit for 2015. Thank you very much.
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Hello everyone, I am Ben Reiher, and I stand here today as the alternative for Europe. Before I begin with my vision for Europe, and my criticisms of our current environment I thank everyone here today for coming to watch this debate in person, as well as all the commissioners running for their ambition for Europe. I wish you all luck, and if elected hope for the best in your commission terms. I also wish to thank our exceptional host for making this spectacular debate possible. A little bit about myself before I begin, I am a business man and operated as the Chairman of the Board of the Leyland-Wutani Corporation 2000-2013. I currently live in Bremen, Prussia and have a wife with two kids now fully grown in the Prussian Imperial Armed Forces. I am political independent with the single view that society should work towards the benefit of us all.
Now unlike most of my other candidates for the most part I have decided not to thank the outgoing commission, this is due to my feeling that it failed in its mission to better the Union. We are down below 100 nations in the Union due to a failed Foreign Affairs Department, war is nearly upon us in regards to Bulgaria which this commission has decided not to touch for political safety, and the most effective commissioners have been put in the least important offices. This was the case with Eric Pickles, a man even though I voted second at the Prussian side of the elections I realize now should be first. He put party politics behind him and turned around the economic commission. ?He is truly a model commissioner and I thank him for his great work for the union, hopefully next election he can rerun for Premier.
Now I won?t use the fact my nation has been in the union longer than other nations that fact imply does not matter. If you have dedication then you can truly serve the Union through the commission. The problem is when we make these distinctions it pushes away those vital new nations from creating an elitist clubs for older, and larger nations.?
Another point on this idea of setting up clubs is how I draw the line at Jean-Marie L'Arc?s comment how females are better multitaskers. If the purpose of this comment is to stop the idea of sexism in regards to this commission, all it does it create more sexism by using a sexist comment to elevate your own position in this election. Frankly disgusting in my opinion.
While I can?t promise huge economic packages such as the head of a country, I promise to continue the economic reforms for the union that Commissioner Pickles and will take any of his advice any day. The Union is here to facilitate economic development within all nation states and should work to integrate the member states economically. While the council has been able to accomplish this through some acts, it still believes in a recent attempt to regulate industries which should be left to the member states. The Union needs to pour resources in integrating and helping states establish Free Trade Agreements, and making sure stable growth is achieved across the board.
I plan to reform the foreign affairs department and will appoint someone who will retake the mantle of Commissioner Bennett who fundamentally changed the department into an important and functioning office. We need to reintroduce the active commissioner for this commission, because this is arguably one of the most important commissions. We need it to keep bringing in new member states who eventually may send in commissioners, who may be Foreign Affairs Commissioners who then recruit new member states, and the circle of life continues.
I also plan to forget political worry for my actions, while I will respect the will of the people I will push for the Commission to get involved where needed, with a neutral tongue to stop conflict. While we managed to avoid some wars, the Groot Belgian crisis had no commission involvement due to the threat of political revenge?..the region was a bullet away from war. The Internal Affairs Commission and the Defense and peacekeeping Commission need to be more active in our Union and protecting us from these conflicts, and looking towards solutions for other problems such as GMOs, World Hunger, and other problems facing our union. They need to have boundaries, so if elected Premier I will keep a tight eye but will support their work in the Union. We need a strong and active commission, not one who hides from political foes.
I stand here with a new voice for Europe, a new path for Europe, in essence a new way. I plan if elected on being the active Premier this Union needs to come out of the stagnation it has been facing the past year and a half. I will bring the commission back to a nonpartisan, effective, and useful body it used to be. I am the alternative for Europe, I am the alternative for you the people, and I am the alternative among all these candidates. Thank you everyone!
**I offer you all a way to run this continent without backdoor deals! Also financial stability in the region with room for economic expansion within the continent.
I am hereby going for the office of internal affairs, this owuld put me in the position to let nations come together who would never come together in the first place, like Davishire and my own country.
Our first question is for the entire group:
"What are your plans to help reinvigorate the Council into passing more legislation which solves current problems in the Union as a whole?" and that comes from an anonymous prussian woman.
There is also a question directed specifically at Mr Reiher, who's author has also decided to remain anonymous:
"Business can obviously benefit from the cooperative actions of the EU, but many feel it is having too much of a negative influence. How can we trust that you won't put business first and won't abuse your role by looking out for vested interests?"
I believe that the EU can be united in bills that are good for the people and always will be so I would write bill myself that are good for the man in the street, and not only politicians if that was allowed that is
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After the Groot-Belgian sat down again, Raul Morland answered the question:
"It is important the people of Europe have faith in the commission. There are several problems in the European Union. Problems need to be solved, and that is where the commission is for. I want to solve these problems, by bringing the commission closer to the european citizens at home, so they get more faith in the commission. The people of Europe need to stand behind the commission."
I don't think the Council's doing too badly. We've had several bills before it this last four months or so - law of the sea, finance agency, that Bulgarian thing, seed trust, roaming rates, and animal rights. A few of those have passed, a few have failed - that's how it goes. So to be honest, I think the Council's one part of our regional government that's not doing too badly. If we want more bills of a certain type, if we want more ideas in our region, we have to fix the fatigue at the heart of our party system. They're all meant to have visions for our region, but those visions are missing in action right now.
After Raul sat down Craig decided to take his go
My fellow candidates have failed to address the fact that it is often newer nations that do not put forward new bills and proposals, this is often because they often are uninformed of the process and should be able to get guidance. I would reintroduce the Guidance Programme to introduce Diplomats, Politicians and the General Public to the Union to make it easier to intergrate and help intergovernmental relationships with new nations. Furthermore I would also allow new nations to present articles under the name of the Union through the speaker to prevent bias against new nations, allowing the follow explicit rules. This should also help encourage new members.
A Corelian who had worked as a civil servant for the outgoing premier stood up and shouted form the audience at Mr Craig:
'That's not a new idea everyone offers it at every election and it doesn't work! Its already been done tell us something new!'
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It?s been proven that council discussions typically leads nowhere,
it is either expected that the commissioner draft up a bill to show the
discussions work or expect a councilor to do as such, this almost never
happens. My colleague from Poretos offered a good idea with his proposed plan,
but it runs into problems. First off the old mentoring program failed for a
variety of reasons, namely being we don?t have the man power, and often enough
these new members become lost causes as we try our best with a case overload.
Instead I offer that we completely remake the information the union provides
about itself, with step by step guides on how to accomplish certain goals such
as Bill crafting, or making relations with new states. Doing this we can get
information across to these people, and if we make it aware enough no questions
need to be asked. On the idea of well proposing new nations propose under the name of the union, it has no real purpose. For the public record and for
accountability all bills must be proposed publically by the author who we can
then identify. There isn?t a bias against new nations, the bias is that their
bills aren?t crafted enough because they haven?t either red through, or been
part of a hugely controversial and hot topic debate. That creates good authors,
a good author is one who is dedicated and is confident about their bill, one
who is willing to defend it. Now that I am done debunking that proposal my answer
is simple, the council do its work there are so many problems the union can
deal with still, the environment, net neutrality, there are so many topics a
bill just needs to have someone dedicated. The council shouldn?t work to tackle
the controversial bills, but rather to target the issues which will have
bipartisan support without making political deals that water down the effect.
There is no problem with the council except a mental problem. One it just needs
to solve itself.
Onto my personal question, I was Chairman of the Board of the
Leyland-Wutani Corporation, the largest corporate body in Prussia, Halsberg,
and one of the largest in the union. I don?t plan to put business first, I plan
to run the Union as a business. This isn?t some supernational state, it is
simply a binding organization. I will be honest though, I do have a special interest,
and they are the people of Europe. I am here to serve all of you, no matter
your political orientation I am here to help you achieve your full potential
regardless of national, racial, social, or economic standing. That?s is why I am
here, to bring Europe back on the path to success, to bring it back away from
the promises of politicians who do anything but make empty promises, I am a
businessman I make deals not promises. I am making the deal with the people of Europe, not the businesses.?
But you said in your opening statement Mr Reiher that you disapproved of the council for being in favour of "industry regulation", of course referring to the Mobile Communications Act which was narrowly defeated some months ago. Some might say that lends credence to the argument you're the candidate for big business. What do you say to those people?
Is this the commission candidate dabate or ask the Pruissian candidate all the questions? said barney stinson jokingly
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Having listened with intent at the other candidates' answers, Eric Hitchens decided it was time to answer:
"I think I have not seen a Commission debate in which this question or a form of this question has not been asked. And indeed, council activity is an important subject. Although as the Angleteric candidate has already said, there have been a substantial number of Council Bills and proposals. The Council itself has not been very active at all, although whenever the subject of a Bill is controversial, it seems Council activity suddenly seems to soar like never before. This was the case with the Bulgarian "Purity" of the Union Act, not long ago. However, when the Polish councillor proposes a region-wide embargo on Bulgaria, nothing materialises. Yes, the Commission is meant to sparkle region-wide discussion on important issues, this cannot be denied, but I think the Council itself should also take a more active role. The Commission cannot solve everything, after all. The Council has had plenty off Bills to discuss, and so I think there are more important matters to discuss, such as the region's member count, which has plummeted to under 100. The new Foreign Affairs Commissioner will need to reinvigorate the recruiting programme and keep up a steady flow of monthly updates."
"I would like to respond to the civil servant, As part of a reasonably new nation joining under part of the commission you worked for I can say you a jot doing enough to help new states. We all agree that we need more members however recruitment is no use if we don't make them say and the current persona of 'Oldies for oldies' is not working! You have to help the new nations. You have to consider everyone, You have to encourage participation. Not retain control to the Older Nations. The idea might not be new and it kit have been tried, but that teaches us how not to do it.Not that it doesn't work. Consider the lights and the Cameras in this room making this possible, if their inventors acted like we do at the moment they wouldn't be here. I can look down this camera and I know I will stare into the eyes of a growing constituency of new members who help the older members I look at now. We shouldn't and we can't ignore them." Answered Craig to the heckler in the crowd.
'The service was there, did you get in touch with any of the commissioners? NO!'