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Schäuble wants direct EU elections to fight voter apathy

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Schäuble wants direct EU elections to fight voter apathy
Photo: DPA
11:06 CEST+02:00
Interior Minister Wolfgang Schäuble has said he supports a direct election of European Union representatives after this weekend's dismal voter turnout for the EU parliamentary election, daily Bild reported on Tuesday.

“When it involves a campaign for one head at the top of Europe, it will get the attention of all of Europe,” Schäuble told the paper.

The interior minister is a member of Chancellor Angela Merkel's conservative Christian Democrats (CDU), who came out on top in this weekend's election at 37.9 percent. Germany has the largest presence in the EU parliament with 99 representatives.

Voter turnout for EU elections is traditionally quite low, and pro-Europe Germany was in line with the continental average at 42.2 percent.

But the stark lack of engagement in EU affairs has some politicians considering alternatives to combat voter apathy.

European parliamentarian for the CDU Elmar Brok also told the paper he was in favour of direct EU elections.

“The parties should campaign across Europe with their candidates for top posts in the EU Commission, who would then be elected by a majority vote in the EU parliament,” he said.

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