Party Groups in the European Parliament: Election and Formation
We have seen that the prospects of the EU developing political parties of its own rest on the party groups in the EP and the extra-parliamentary federations. The next four chapters will examine how far these have developed the characteristics of political parties, the variables that seem to stimulate their evolution and the factors that hold them back. This chapter will start by looking at the composition and formation of the party groups. It will show how a highly idiosyncratic mix of national and transnational party politics decisively shapes the EP and the whole character of the political representation that it offers the public. This mix, in turn, operates through three stages: the recruitment of MEPs, elections to the EP and post-electoral group formation.
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