David Cameron has nominated Lord Hill of Oareford, the leader of the House of Lords, to be the next British member of the European Commission according to the BBC. Hill served as political secretary to Prime Minister John Major during the controversial Maastricht Treaty negotiations which caused a huge rebellion on the Conservative benches and saw the UK surrender power to Brussels. The treaty established paved the way for a common foreign policy, security policy, justice and the introduction of the Euro.
His appointment may raise concerns amongst some anti-EU Tories because of his links to John Major and the Maastricht Treaty negotiations, but he is now being widely described as Eurosceptic by government insiders.
Lord Hill will succeed Lady Ashton, who was nominated by Gordon Brown in 2009 and subsequently got the job of as EU high commissioner for foreign affairs. As reported yesterday on Breitbart London the news European Commission President Jean-Claude Juncker had demanded the British nominate a woman.
He does not have the technical right to tell countries who to nominate but he does pick which portfolio each member gets. So he simply indicated that he would give a better portfolio to a woman than a man, something that he is legally allowed to threaten.
The appointment of Lord Hill to the European Commission avoids the thorny issue of having a House of Commons by-election – one that the Conservatives may lose. Commissioners are forced to give up their seats in their national parliaments, in the case of MPs this means a by-election but members of the House of Lords just take a leave of absence.
Although almost unheard of outside Westminster, Lord Hill is a former Education Minister with a long track record as an establishment insider. Like his predecessor at the European Commission, he has never been elected to any public office.