Greens have this week secured the support of the European Parliament for a report on declarations of interests of European Commissioners. Recommendations in the report, and supported by a majority of MEPs, include an obligation for all commissioners to declare all financial interests, assets and liabilities and to extend the ‘cooling off’ period to at least three years, so that they can’t become lobbyists immediately after leaving their post – the so-called revolving door.
Reacting to the vote, Molly, who has long argued for reforms to block the ‘revolving door’ that leads from public office to corporate lobbyist, said:
“Those commissioners looking forward to the revolving door at the end of their time of public service must be feeling in a bit of a spin today. The swift passage of former Commission president, José Manuel Barroso, to join Goldman Sachs was a high profile example of the effortless move from public servant to corporate lobbyist, but there have been many others. The three-year rule is an important measure to help restore credibility in the EU and its institutions.
“Greens recognise that Europe isn’t perfect, but we have always wanted to stay in it, in order to make these kinds of reforms. Unfortunately, Euroskeptics prefer to criticise, and then profit themselves from the very corruption they condemn. Many on the left who voted to leave the EU did so because of concerns over revolving doors and this vote makes clear that MEPs want to put a stop to this. I hope that we will see this same level of transparency and accountability in the UK.”