The European Commission is the executive body of the European Union responsible for proposing legislation, implementing decisions, upholding the Union's treaties and day-to-day running of the EU.
The Commission operates as a cabinet government, with 27 members of the Commission (informally known as "commissioners" ). There is one member per member state, though members are bound to represent the interests of the EU as a whole rather than their home state. One of the 27 is the Commission President (currently José Manuel Durão Barroso) proposed by the European Council and elected by the European Parliament. The Council then appoints the other 26 members of the Commission in agreement with the nominated President, and then the 27 members as a single body are subject to a vote of approval by the European Parliament. The first Barroso Commission took office in late 2004 and its successor, under the same President, took office in 2010.
The term "Commission" is used either in the narrow sense of the 27-member College of Commissioners (or College) or to also include the administrative body of about 23,000 European civil servants who are split into departments called Directorates-General and Services. The internal working languages of the Commission are English, French and German. The Members of the Commission and their "cabinets" (immediate teams) are based in the Berlaymont building of Brussels.
Famous quotes containing the words european and/or commission:
“When the inhabitants of some sequestered island first descry the big canoe of the European rolling through the blue waters towards their shores, they rush down to the beach in crowds, and with open arms stand ready to embrace the strangers. Fatal embrace! They fold to their bosoms the vipers whose sting is destined to poison all their joys; and the instinctive feeling of love within their breasts is soon converted into the bitterest hate.”
—Herman Melville (18191891)
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—Marian Wright Edelman (20th century)