Party of European Socialists explained

Party Name:Party of European Socialists
Country:the European Union
President: Sergei Stanishev
Foundation:1953 (Group)
1973 (Confederation)
1992 (Party)
Ideology:Social democracy
International:Socialist International
Europarl:Progressive Alliance of Socialists and Democrats
Colours:Red
Position:Centre-left
Youth Wing:ECOSY
Wing1 Title:Women's wing
Wing1:PES Women
Seats1 Title:European Parliament
Seats1:
Headquarters:Rue du Trône/Troonlaan, 98, 1050 Brussels, Belgium
Website:http://www.pes.org

The Party of European Socialists (PES) is a European political party led by Sergei Stanishev, former Prime Minister of Bulgaria. The PES comprises social-democratic national-level political parties primarily from Member state of the European Union, as well as other nations of the European continent. The PES member parties are themselves members of the Socialist International. The PES forms the majority of the Progressive Alliance of Socialists and Democrats (S&D) group in the European parliament. The PES also operates in the Committee of the Regions and the European Council.

Name

The party's English name is "Party of European Socialists". In addition, the following names are used in other languages:

History

1960s

In 1961, the Socialists in the European Parliament attempted to produce a common European Socialist Programme but were neglected due to the applications of Britain, Denmark, Ireland and Norway to join the European Communities. The Socialist's 1962 congress pushed for greater democratisation and powers for Parliament though it was only in 1969 that this possibility was examined by the member states.

1970s

In 1973, Denmark, Ireland and the United Kingdom joined the European Community bringing in new parties from these countries. The enlarged Socialist Congress met in Bonn and inaugurated the Confederation of the Socialist Parties of the European Community. The Congress also passed a resolution on social policy, including the right to decent work, social security, democracy and equality in the European economy.[1] In 1978, the Confederation of Socialist Parties approved the first common European election Manifesto. It focused on several goals among which the most important were to ensure a right to decent work, fight pollution, end discrimination, protect the consumer and promote peace, human rights and civil liberties.

1980s

The Luxembourg Congress approved the first Statue of the Confederation of Socialist Parties in 1980. The accession of Greece in 1981, followed by Spain and Portugal in 1986 brought in more parties. In 1984 another common Socialist election manifesto was approved at a congress in Luxembourg. The Manifesto proposed a socialist remedy for the economic crisis by establishing a link between industrial production, protection of the fundamental social benefits and the fight for an improved quality of life.[1]

1990s

In 1992, with the European Communities becoming the European Union and with the Treaty of Maastricht establishing the framework for political parties at the European Level, the Confederation was able to mobilize a majority of delegates in favour of transforming the Confederation into the Party of European Socialists. The first programme of the party concentrated on job creation, democracy, gender equality, environmental and consumer protection, peace and security, regulation of immigration, discouragement of racism and fighting organised crime.[1]

2000s

In 2004 Poul Nyrup Rasmussen defeated Giuliano Amato to be elected President of the PES, succeeding Robin Cook in the post. He was re-elected for a further 2.5 years at the PES Congress in Porto on 8 December 2006 and for another 2.5 years at the Prague Congress in 2009.

He resigned at the PES Progressive Convention of Brussels on 24th November 2011, and was replaced by Sergei Dmitrievich Stanishev, chairman of the Bulgarian Socialist Party (BSP), elected PES Interim President, by acclamation, by the PES Presidency.

On the same day, the PES Council made the decision that the next PES candidate for Commission President would be democratically elected through a PES presidential primary taking place in January 2014.

Presidents

Presidents of the Party of European Socialists and its predecessors.[2]

colspan=2PresidentStateNational partycolspan=2Term
1.Wilhelm DröscherSocial Democratic Party of Germany (SPD)April 1974January 1979
2.Robert PontillonSocialist Party (PS)January 1979March 1980
3.Joop den UylLabour Party (PvdA)March 1980May 1987
4.Vítor ConstâncioSocialist Party (PS)May 1987January 1989
5.Guy SpitaelsSocialist Party (PS)February 1989May 1992
6.Willy ClaesSocialist Party (SP)November 1992October 1994
7.Rudolf ScharpingSocial Democratic Party (SPD)March 1995May 2001
8.Robin CookLabour PartyMay 200124 April 2004
9.Poul Nyrup RasmussenSocial Democrats (SD)24 April 200424 November 2011
10.Sergei StanishevBulgarian Socialist Party (BSP)24 November 2011

Organisation

There are thirty-three member parties from all the twenty-seven member state, Norway and Moldova. There are a further twelve associate and five observer parties. PES is an associated organisation of the Socialist International. ECOSY - Young European Socialists is the youth organisation of PES and PES Women is the party's women's organisation, led by Zita Gurmai MEP.[3]

The parties meet at the party Congress twice every five years to decide on political orientation, such as adopting manifestos ahead of elections. Every year that the Congress does not meet, the Council (a quarter Congress) shapes PES policy. The Congress also elects the party's President, Vice Presidents and the Presidency.[3]

The President (currently former Prime Minister of Denmark Poul Nyrup Rasmussen) represents the party on a daily basis and chairs the Presidency, which also consists of the Secretary General, President of the S&D group in Parliament and one representative per full member party and organisation. They may also be joined by the President of the European Parliament (if a PES member), a PES European Commissioner and a representatives from associate parties and organisations.[3]

The Leader's Conference brings together Prime Ministers and Party Leaders from PES parties three to four times a year to agree strategies and resolutions.[3]

In Decembre 2009, disappointed by the European elections results, the PES decided to put forward a candidate for Commission President at all subsequent elections.[4] There is a campaign within the party to organise primaries to select this candidate.[5]

PES in the European institutions

Overview of the European institutions

OrganisationInstitutionNumber of seats
European Parliament
European Commission
European Council
(Heads of Government)
Council of the European Union
(Participation in Government)
colspan=3 style="background:lightgray;"
Parliamentary Assembly

European Parliament

See also: Progressive Alliance of Socialists and Democrats.

European Commission

European Commissioners are meant to remain independent, however there has been an increasing degree of politicisation within the Commission.[6] Although the current Barroso Commission is dominated by Commissioners from the centre-right EPP (13/27) and the liberal ELDR (8/27), six of the twenty-seven Commissioners belong to PES.

PortfolioCommissionerStateEuropartyPhoto
High RepresentativeFirst Vice-President

Foreign Affairs and Security Policy
AshtonCatherine Ashton

United Kingdom
PES
National: Labour
CompetitionVice-President;
Competition
AlmuniaJoaquín Almunia

Spain
PES
National: PSOE
Inter-Institutional Relations and AdministrationVice-President;
Inter-Institutional Relations and Administration
SefčovičMaroš Šefčovič

Slovakia
PES
National: Smer-SD
Maritime Affairs and FisheriesDamanakiMaria Damanaki

Greece
PES
National: PASOK
Enlargement and European Neighbourhood PolicyFüleŠtefan Füle

Czech Republic
PES
National: ČSSD
Employment, Social Affairs and InclusionAndorLászló Andor

Hungary
PES
National: MSZP

European Council and Council of Ministers

Party-alignment at the European Council is often loose, but has been the basis of some intergovernmental cooperation. At present five countries are led by a PES-affiliated leader, who represents that state at the European Council: Austria (Werner Faymann), Slovenia (Borut Pahor), Spain (José Luis Rodríguez Zapatero), Denmark (Helle Thorning-Schmidt) and Belgium (Elio Di Rupo). The makeup of national delegations to the Council of Ministers is at some times subject to coalitions: for the above governments led by a PES party, that party may not be present in all Council configurations; in other governments led by non-PES parties a PES minister may be its representative for certain portfolios. PES is in coalition in a further two countries: Ireland and Luxembourg.[7]

Overview

Parliamentary Assembly of the Council of Europe

See also: Socialist Group.

Committee of the Regions

PES has 110 members in the Committee of the Regions as of 2007.[7]

National legislatures

CountryInstitutionNumber of seats
rowspan=2National Council
Lower house
Federal Council
Upper house
rowspan=2Chamber of Representatives
Lower house
Senate
Upper house
National Assembly
House of Representatives
rowspan=2Chamber of Deputies
Lower house
Senate
Upper house
Folketing
Riigikogu
Parliament
rowspan=2National Assembly
Lower house
Senate
Upper house
Bundestag
Parliament
National Assembly
rowspan=2Dáil
Lower house
Seanad
Upper house
rowspan=2Chamber of Deputies
Lower house
Senate
Upper house
Saeima
Seimas
Chamber of Deputies
House of Representatives
rowspan=2House of Representatives
Lower house
Senate
Upper house
Parliament
rowspan=2Sejm
Lower house
Senate
Upper house
Assembly of the Republic
rowspan=2Chamber of Deputies
Lower house
Senate
Upper house
National Council
National Assembly
rowspan=2Congress of Deputies
Lower house
Senate
Upper house
Parliament
rowspan=2House of Commons
Lower house
House of Lords
Upper house

Member parties

With 32 members it is the only political party to have a member from every EU state, although not all of them have elected MEPs.[8]

StateNameabbr.MEPs
Social Democratic Party of AustriaSPÖ5
(Flemish Community)Socialist Party DifferentSP.a2
(French Community)Socialist PartyPS3
Bulgarian Socialist PartyBSP5
Movement for Social DemocracyEDEK1[9]
Czech Social Democratic PartyČSSD7
Social DemocratsSD5
Social Democratic PartySDE1
Social Democratic Party of FinlandSDP3
Socialist PartyPS14
Social Democratic Party of GermanySPD23
Panhellenic Socialist MovementPASOK8
rowspan=2Hungarian Socialist PartyMSZP4
Hungarian Social Democratic PartyMSZDP0
Labour PartyLabour3
Democratic PartyPD21
Italian Socialist PartyPSI0
Latvian Social Democratic Workers' PartyLSDSP0
Social Democratic Party of LithuaniaLSDP2
Luxembourg Socialist Workers' PartyLSAP1
Labour PartyPL4
Democratic Party of MoldovaPDMN/A[10]
Labour PartyPvdA3
Labour PartyApN/A[11]
rowspan=2Democratic Left AllianceSLD6
Labour UnionUP1
Socialist PartyPS7
Social Democratic PartyPSD10
Direction – Social DemocracySmer5
Social DemocratsSD1
Spanish Socialist Workers' PartyPSOE24
Swedish Social Democratic PartySAP5
rowspan=2Labour PartyLabour13
Social Democratic and Labour PartySDLP0
colspan=5 style="background:lightgray;"
Associated parties
StateNameabbr.Status
Socialist Party of AlbaniaPSSAssociate
Social Democratic Party of Bosnia and HerzegovinaSDPAssociate
Party of Bulgarian Social DemocratsPBSAssociate
Social Democratic Party of CroatiaSDPAssociate
AllianceSAssociate
Social Democratic Union of MacedoniaSDSMAssociate
rowspan=2Democratic Party of Socialists of MontenegroDPSAssociate
Social Democratic Party of MontenegroSDPAssociate
Democratic PartyDSAssociate
Social Democratic Party of SwitzerlandSP/PSAssociate
rowspan=2Republican People's PartyCHPAssociate
Peace and Democracy PartyBDPAssociate
colspan=6 style="background:lightgray;"
Observer parties
StateNameabbr.Status
Social Democratic PartyPSObserver
rowspan=2Israeli Labor Partyעבודה‎Observer
New Movement-MeretzN/AObserver
Party of Socialists and DemocratsPSDObserver
Republican Turkish PartyCTPObserver

External links

Notes and References

  1. Web site: History. Socialist Group website. 11 November 2007.
  2. Web site: Former PES Presidents. PES website. 21 January 2008.
  3. Web site: How does PES work?. PES website. 7 November 2007.
  4. Web site: A New Direction for Progressive Societies. Resolution N. 2 A new way forward. Adopted by the 8th PES Congress. PES. 8 December 2009. 17 October 2010.
  5. Web site: Phillips. Leigh. Socialists want US-style primaries for commission president candidate. EU Observer. 12 August 2010. 17 October 2010.
  6. Web site: Mahony. Honor. EU Observer. Brussels struggles with communication policy.. 7 May 2007. 12 May 2007.
  7. Web site: The Socialist Family in the EU. PES CoR Group website. 7 November 2007.
  8. Web site: PES Members. PES website. 7 November 2007.
  9. Kyriacos Mavronicholas, since June 2009
  10. Moldova is outside the European Union, hence this party does not participate in European elections.
  11. Norway is outside the European Union, hence this party does not participate in European elections.