I’m no fan of the Tory Party or indeed any of the parties they are cooperating with in their new political group in the European Parliament, the ECRG – European Conservatives and Reformists Group.
Yet even I cannot have imagined how soon things would start to crack, for today Hannu Takkula of the Finnish Centre Party has decided that he will not join the group and will stay with ALDE after all. Takkula’s original decision to join ECRG was controversial, and it seems some people in the party must have applied pressure…
I would just like to see what the reaction to this story is going to be in the UK blogosphere, especially from Iain Dale, Con Home and Guido, all of whom were so content that the Tories had managed to make the group in the first place. I would not be at all surprised if not a single one of them made any mention of Takkula’s departure.
That leaves the group with MEPs from 7 Member States, the limit to form a political group. If any other jump ship the Tories will have a major problem.
Seems Waldemar Tomaszewski from Lithuania wants to join (has joined?) the new group. So there are 8 MS still. Translation of the news story here. Where – if anywhere – does ECRG have a definitive list? For what it’s worth it seems Tomaszewski is a bit less dodgy than some of the others, at least from what I can gather in English on the web anyway.
[UPDATE 2 – 25.06.09, 2350]
Guido has followed up on Takkula, neither Dale nor Con Home have (although the latter does mention Waldemar Tomaszewski, erroneously claiming there are 9 MS in the group).