North East MEP leads EU Tories
Martin Callanan elected Chairman of Conservative MEP group
Martin is the Conservative MEP for North-East England and today he has been elected as Chairman of the Conservative Group of MEPs in the EU Parliament, this is the second time that a North-East representative has had a position of some influence within the European Union following the period when former Jarrow Labour councillor and MEP Alan Donnelly led the Labour Group from 1998 to 2005.
Callanan has a heaped plate following the latest crisis facing the EU and it’s bale out of the Irish economy with a potential repeat in Portugal, coupled with the new alignment of centre right parties announced just after the general election. Martin was the last Conservative member of Gateshead council and succeeds Sir Timothy Kirkhope as Conservative Leader, a former employee of Scottish and Newcastle Breweries Martin is a strong campaigner for the traditional British pub!
Speaking today Baroness Sayeeda Warsi, the co-chairman of the Conservative Party said:
“Congratulations to Martin on being elected to lead the Conservatives in the European Parliament. Under his leadership, we hope that the delegation will continue its good work in the European Parliament, effectively representing the UK and working towards a more open, accountable and democratic EU.”
Speaking after the vote, Martin Callanan said:
“I am delighted and honoured to have won the support of my colleagues to lead the Conservatives in the European Parliament. I would also like to thank my predecessor for his efforts over the last couple of years in what has been a challenging and exciting time for Conservative MEPs. Conservative MEPs stand at the forefront in defending Britain’s interests in the EU. We will continue to do so. The EU currently stands at a crossroads, winded by the financial crisis and increasingly removed from the people it claims to represent.
Our task as Conservative MEPs and my job as Leader is to represent UK interests and help to put Europe on the right road, a road where member states co-operate, where our sovereignty as a nation is not eroded further, and where co-operation in areas such as the single market and Trade can reap dividends for all of us.”
At a time when the EU is taking more and more power and bureaucratic functions towards its bulging centre it is to be hoped that Martin will stand firmly for British interests and campaign for a slowing down in the sovereign growth of the EU’s bureaucratic empire which launches further incursions into our life and our Parliamentary democracy as every week goes by.
The people of the north-east appreciate a plain speaker and that is what we hope Martin will become, so at least we will feel that we exert some sort of influence in a body which more and more of us feel is bombproof to criticisms, and immune to the desires, hopes, and aspirations of it’s constituents.