Political Groups

Who are they?

The Members of the European Parliament are organised first and foremost according to their political affiliation. To that end, the Parliament is split in seven different Political Groups, going from extreme left to extreme right, and from the pro-federalists to the Eurosceptics (not to speak about the Europhobes).

To create a political group, several rules have to be observed:

  • The Group must have a minimum of 25 MEPs
  • The MEPs must come from at least one fourth of the Member States, which at the moment means 7 Member States
  • The Group must not necessarily be made up of one single political party, but the parties that are in it must have some “political affinity”.

Once recognised, political groups have the right to receive subsidies from the parliament as well as guaranteed seats on Committees, including a quote of leading positions.

The current European Parliament Political Groups are:

Group of the European People’s Party (Christian Democrats) (EPP)

epp-ed.euwww.eppgroup.eu

President: Joseph Daul (FR)

Secretary General: Martin Kamp

Group of Progressive Alliance of Socialists and Democrats (S&D)

sanddwww.socialistsanddemocrats.eu

President: Martin Schulz (DE)

Secretary General: Anna Colombo

Alliance of Liberals and Democrats for Europe (ALDE)

photo3www.alde.eu

President: Guy Verhofstadt (BE)

Secretary General: Alexander Beels

The Greens-European Free Alliance Group (Greens / EFA)

efawww.greens-efa.org

Co-President: 102541.cohnbendit {at} en(.)htm" target="_blank">Daniel Cohn-Bendit (FR)

Co-President: Rebecca Harms (DE)

Secretary General: Vula Tsetsi

European Conservatives and Reformists (ECR)

ECR logo-smallwww.ecrgroup.eu

President: Michał Kamiński (PL)

European United Left / Nordic Green Left (UEN / NGL)

gue_nglwww.guengl.eu

President: Francis Wurtz (FR)

Secretary General: D’Alimonte Maria

Europe of Freedom and Democracy Group (EFD)

CMJN de basewww.efdgroup.eu

Co-President: Nigel Farage (UK)

Co-President: Francesco Enrico Speroni (IT)

Where are they?

Political Groups sit with the Parliament, even though some of their meetings are held outside of the Brussels/Strasbourg axis.

What do they do?

The political groups hold regular meetings during the week before the part-session and during the part-session week, as well as seminars to determine the main principles of their Community activity.

Good to know

  • Several political groupings have founded political parties that operate at European level, e.g. the European People’s Party, the Party of European Socialists, the European Green Party and the European Liberal Democrat and Reform Party. They work in close cooperation with the corresponding political groups within Parliament.
  • The non-attached (or “NI” for the French “non-inscrits”) MEPs are all those that are not members of any recognised political group. The non-attached rarely intervene at Committee level but have been known to try to make an impact at plenary sessions.
  • The EPP Group has provided over half the Presidents of the Parliament so far.
  • In many negotiations, the ALDE party, as third biggest party, can play an essential role in case of disagreement between the two main parties, namely EPP and S&D.
  • The permanent staff of political groups, and notably the political advisors, can play a key role in the shaping of policies, especially on the less politically visible issues.

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