The European Parliament is one of the EU’s legislative institutions. Parliament is located in both Strasbourg and Brussels. Since 1979, direct elections to Parliament have been held. The European Parliament is thus an important part of the EU’s democratic legitimacy, and has three overarching competences.
- The legislative. However, how much Parliament can actually decide as a legislator depends on the decision – making process, but Parliament’s competence has grown significantly over the years. Today, Parliament, together with the Council of Ministers, legislates in the ordinary legislative procedure applicable to most EU policies, such as the environment, consumer protection, the internal market, social affairs and so on.
- Budgetary competence. The Commission prepares proposals for the EU budget, after which the European Parliament can table amendments and finally adopt the budget together with the Council of Ministers.
- The approval of the Commission and its President, where the European Parliament has also increased its influence over time.
Elections to the European Parliament
The European Parliament has 705 members directly elected in the 27 EU Member States listed on Countryaah. Elections to Parliament are held every five years and the number of members is distributed according to the population of the Member States.
Denmark has 14 seats in the European Parliament. In the current election period, which is 2019-2024, the Liberal Party has four seats, the Social Democrats three seats, the Radical Left and the Socialist People’s Party each have two seats, while the Unity List, the Conservatives and the Danish People’s Party each have one seat.
9 elections to the European Parliament have now been held; in 1979, 1984, 1989, 1994, 1999, 2004, 2009, 2014 and 2019. Turnout for the European Parliament varies from country to country and between elections, but has decreased on average for Member States over time apart from the last election in 2019. Here, the average turnout rose to 50.62% after being down to 42.61% in 2014. According to Abbreviationfinder, EU is the abbreviation for European Union.
In Denmark, turnout has risen in some election years, while in others it has fallen. In 2019, however, the turnout set a record in Denmark with 66% of the population voting in the election.
In the European Parliament, members are organized in political groups and not by nationality. There are 7 political groups in the current Parliament. In addition, some members are ‘non-attached Members’ and therefore not members of a political group.
- The largest political group in the current Parliament is the European People’s Party (EPP) with 187 members. Here sits the Danish member from the Conservatives.
- The second largest group is the Social Democratic Group (S&D) with 146 members. Here are the three Danish Social Democrats.
- The third largest group is the Renew Europe group (RENEW) with 98 members. Here are the Danish members from both the Liberal Party and the Radical Left.
- The fourth largest group is the group Identity and Democracy (ID) with 76 members. Here sits the Danish member from the Danish People’s Party.
- The Green Group, also called the European Free Alliance (Green/EFA) has 67 members. The Danish members from the Socialist People’s Party are sitting here.
- The Group of European Conservatives and Reformists (EKR) has 62 members, but no Danish member.
- Finally, the group has the Joint Group of the European Left, also called the Nordic Green Left, (GUE/NGL) 39 seats in Parliament. Here is the Danish member from the Unity List.
In its day-to-day work, Parliament is organized into committees, divided into different policy areas. The committees consider the individual bills. The parliamentarians are divided into the various committees. When a committee becomes the main committee in the consideration of a bill, it elects a rapporteur for the bill, who must write a report/report. Becoming a rapporteur on a proposal is a very important function in Parliament. It is the rapporteur that the lobbyists will first and foremost meet with, and it is the rapporteur who will later have to negotiate a compromise in place with the Council of Ministers and the European Commission (triologists).
The political groups receive a number of rapporteurships based on their size. The political groups then go after the law publishers they think are most important for them to get a rapporteur on. The rapporteur is responsible for preparing a draft report with various amendments to the Commission proposal. The draft report is discussed in the committee responsible, and the draft is voted on in committee before the report and the amendments are put to the vote in Parliament’s plenary, i.e. in the Chamber, where all Members of the European Parliament have the opportunity to vote.
With few exceptions, the language of Europe belongs to the Indo-European language family. They are geographically distributed with Romance languages in the west and south, in addition to Romanian in the Balkans, Baltic and Slavic languages in the east and Germanic in the north and west.
Of the less common Indo-European languages, Celtic are found in western Ireland and Scotland, as well as in Wales and Brittany, and Greek and Albanian in the south-east. In addition, especially in Central Europe, Yiddish is spoken by Jews and Romani by Roma.
The non-Indo-European languages in Europe are, for example, Sami, Finnish, Estonian and Hungarian, all of which belong to the Finno-Ugric language family, Basque, which is an isolated language, the Semitic language Maltese and Turkish in the European part of Turkey and spread in the Balkans.
|The language of Europe|
In the European parts of the former Soviet Union, in addition to the Indo-European languages, Russian and Ukrainian are spoken by several non-Indo-European languages, such as Samoan and Caucasian languages.
The current distribution of the Indo-European languages, which originally spread across Europe in prehistoric times, largely reflects conditions and events in historical times: the spread of the Roman Empire as well as Germanic and Slavic migrations in the early Middle Ages.
The Finno-Ugric-speaking peoples immigrated partly in prehistoric times (Sami, Finns and Estonians), partly in the 800’s-900’s during the Hungarian expansion from the areas around the Urals. The Altaic language Turkish spread from the 15th century across the Balkans from Asia Minor.
Basque is believed to constitute a remnant of the original language area from before Indo-European immigration. Many of the original languages, such as Etruscan and Iberian, survived up to classical times, Pictish even to the 700’s-800’s.
Recent immigration has brought large groups of Turkish, Kurdish, Arabic, Persian and Hindi or Urdu-speaking populations to most major cities in Western Europe. The linguistic integration between the peoples is sought to be promoted officially by both the Council of Europe and the EU.
The language of Europe
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In parentheses are given older words or word forms which more clearly show kinship with the other languages, but which now have a different meaning or stylistically limited use.