[Fsfe-ie] McCreevy takes up post 1.11.2004

Alex Macfie alex-list at ffii.org.uk
Tue Aug 24 06:37:08 CEST 2004

On Tue, 2004-08-24 at 15:01, Teresa Hackett [default] wrote:
> Yes there is, because the proposal has to go back to the European Parliament
> for a second reading, perhaps around December/January. Gay Mitchell belongs
> to the European People's Party, the largest political group (268 out of 720
> MEPs), so how the EPP group vote will be crucial. 

Most likely its official line will be pro-swpat, because of Harbour (UK,
Conservative) and Wuermeling (DE, CSU) as spokesmen. But last September
a significant minority of PPE MEPs voted against swpat, which included
entire national delegations (one being that of Ireland of course). A PPE
anti-swpat caucus was formed around the Finnish MEP Piia-Noora Kauppi
(who's back), and followers were found by both picking off individuals
and finding opinion-formers within party groups who were anti-swpat. The
other two big groups (PSE, ELDR) were handled likewise.

A lot of MEP minds *were* changed between June (when the JURI committee
votes) and September last year. I can think of several PPE MEPs whose
assistants told me and others they would follow the Harbour/Wuermeling
line but who ended up voting against swpat. Avril Doyle is back which
can only be a good thing. As for Gay Mitchell you guys can best judge
whether his support for swpat is 'soft' or 'hard'. Maybe he was just
following the herd and didn't know any better. OTOH he could be a
creature of the civil service.

McCreevey belongs to the same party as Brian Crowley MEP, who seems
strongly anti-swpat and led his group to vote that way. Have they
talked? Would it make any difference? There seems to be a big gulf
between Irish MEPs and the Irish gvt on this issue.

Alex Macfie, Taipei, Taiwan ROC              email <alex at cgce.net>
Tel: +886 955 857477                        <http://www.cgce.net/>
STOP SOFTWARE PATENTS IN EUROPE           <http://swpat.ffii.org/>

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