It may mark a turning point for the usually weak European Parliament. Faced with the threat of a first-ever parliamentary veto of a proposed new European Commission, EC President Jos? Manuel Barroso withdrew his slate of 24 candidates on Oct. 27 and asked for more time to propose a new team. The decision, which prevents Barroso from taking office on Nov. 1, is seen as a victory for the Parliament. The 732-member body has only limited powers and has failed to wield them effectively in the past.
This time the Parliament objected to several commission nominees, including Italian Justice Commission candidate Rocco Buttiglione, who in a public hearing called homosexuality a sin. Now, Barroso must reshuffle the portfolios or seek new national candidates that can pass muster before a scheduled vote on the commission in mid-November. EDITED BY Edited by Rose Brady