Bloomberg News

Lawmaker Fined for Calling Van Rompuy Damp Rag Loses Case

September 17, 2012

A U.K. lawmaker that wants the country out of the European Union lost an appeal of fines imposed by the region’s assembly after he compared President Herman Van Rompuy to a damp rag.

Nigel Farage, a member of the EU Parliament from the U.K. Independence Party that seeks the country’s withdrawal from the 27-nation bloc, was punished for a 2010 speech in which he said the former Belgian prime minister had “all the charisma of a damp rag and the appearance of a low-grade bank clerk.” Van Rompuy was present for the speech in parliament’s chamber.

Farage lost his challenge at the EU’s General Court that sought to overturn a penalty of 2,980 euros ($3,900), according to a court order dated Sept. 5 and published today.

The case is: T564/11 Nigel Paul Farage v European Parliament and Jerzy Buzek.

To contact the reporter on this story: Aoife White in Brussels at

To contact the editor responsible for this story: Anthony Aarons at

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