Juncker ‘a friend of Portugal’, says outgoing EC boss

In stark contrast to the attitude of British Prime Minister David Cameron, outgoing president of the EC Durão Barroso has pronounced himself “very satisfied” with the election of Jean-Claude Juncker to take his place.
“I have known Jean-Claude Juncker for more than 25 years,” Barroso told journalists. “He is a man who is very Europeanist, a political leader with great experience, and – I can say this – a friend of our country.”
Juncker’s appointment will now go to a vote in the European Parliament, where it is almost certainly to be carried.
Meantime, Europe’s leaders have been dubbed ‘cowards’ for electing arch-federalist Juncker by Britain’s health secretary Jeremy Hunt, who is right behind David Cameron’s disgust over the decision taken in Brussels last Friday.
As Sky News senior political reporter Jason Farrell reported, Hunt’s language “might not seem like the most diplomatic” but he is not alone in his interpretation of EU leaders’ vote.
“Der Spiegel magazine in Germany has said Angela Merkel voted for a Commission president she didn’t want – others have said European leaders have gone for a compromise.”
Only Britain and Hungary voted against Juncker’s appointment – and the reason is that both countries doubt he will push for the reform they say the EU so desperately needs.
Elsewhere, Juncker got the thumbs-up from Portugal’s tabloid Correio da Manhã which said he was “a leader who appreciated Portuguese wine”.
Juncker’s penchant for alcohol is well-documented in Brussels, with some politicians claiming the former Luxembourg prime minister even drinks cognac at breakfast.