Ursula von der Leyen, the incoming president of the European Commission, has written to Boris Johnson asking him to nominate a member of the Commission — and preferably a woman.
Von der Leyen’s deputy chief spokesperson, Dana Spinant, told the regular midday press briefing in Brussels on Wednesday that a letter has been sent to the U.K. prime minister asking him to put forward a name or names, and to put women on the list. Johnson was asked to respond quickly to the request. Spinant said the aim was to have a vote on the entire Commission top team by the end of November.
A spokesperson for the U.K. government said it would reply “in due course.”
A Brexit extension until the end of January was agreed late last month. Just before the extension was granted, von der Leyen said if the U.K. was still in the EU after November 1, “then of course I would ask the U.K. to send a commissioner.”
The Commission president-elect’s quest for gender balance took a hit when France put forward Thierry Breton as its nominee after first choice Sylvie Goulard was rejected by the European Parliament.
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