MEPs... Say What!? Tweets of the week

Article published on March 10, 2014
Article published on March 10, 2014

Who says EU politi­cians are a bunch of face­less bu­reau­crats? They're peo­ple just like us, and here's the proof. Each week Cafébabel will be bring­ing you a se­lec­tion of the weird­est, whack­i­est and most touch­ing Tweets from Eu­ro­pean par­lia­men­tary can­di­dates. We'll bring you bright ideas, bril­liance and loonies, and above all we'll bring you rea­sons to vote in the May elec­tions.

Trans­la­tion: "In Ger­ma­ny Da­niel Cohn Ben­dit is ac­cu­sed of pae­do­phi­lia. In Fran­ce, he is wor­king for the Eu­ro­pe Eco­lo­gy coa­li­tion in the 2014 EU elec­tions". 

Known as Danny The Red in the days when he lead the May 1968 Fren­ch stu­dent re­vol­ts, Da­niel Cohn Ben­dit is both bril­liant and bon­kers, the kind of cha­ri­sma­tic po­li­ti­cian Eu­ro­pe so de­spe­ra­te­ly needs. Frighte­ned by his po­pu­la­ri­ty and ir­re­si­sti­ble charm, tra­di­tio­nal, ro­tund po­li­ti­cians, like cru­sty Fren­ch can­di­da­te To­bias Teu­scher, dig up un­sa­vou­ra­ry, un­pro­ven ru­mours from Cohn Ben­di­t’s past. In this Tweet Teu­scher plays the pae­do­phi­lia card, a tac­tic also em­ployed by UK con­ser­va­ti­ves again­st Har­riet Har­man.

In Eu­ro­pe, 80 mil­lion peo­ple live below the po­ver­ty line. 30 mil­lion suf­fer from mal­nu­tri­tion. The EU has set up a new £2.5bn fund – Eu­ro­pean Aid to the Most De­pri­ved. De­spi­te the fact 500,000 peo­ple have vi­si­ted food banks in Britain since Ea­ster last year, the British gov­ern­ment has re­fused to use the fund to sup­port Britain's poor­est. Jude Ro­bin­son is hi­ghlighting the gra­vi­ty of the pro­blem.

Trans­la­tion: "I miss Rea­gan. He spoke for 1 ½ mi­nu­tes, not 1 ½ hours, and not as if he was spea­king to the tsar of half the world, but as if he was spea­king with a KGB lieu­te­nant-co­lo­nel. Putin would have been so sca­red his botox would have mel­ted."

Jacek Kur­ski is moc­king Ba­rack Oba­ma's pus­sy-foo­ting round Vla­di­mir Putin du­ring the #Cri­mea­Ri­ver cri­sis in Ukrai­ne. Kur­ski seems to think Putin could do with a tough tal­king to à la Ronald Rea­gan, or pe­rhaps he’s just jea­lous of Pu­tin’s boy­ish good looks.

Katie Ho­p­kins is a co­lum­ni­st for The Sun new­spa­per, a for­mer con­te­stant on rea­li­ty TV shows The Ap­pren­ti­ce and I'm A Ce­le­bri­ty Get Me Out of Here, and, as you can see from this tweet, she certainly does not subscribe to notions of political correctness. In the 2009 Eu­ro­pean elec­tions, she pol­led just 0.6% in her con­sti­tuen­cy, but this year she hopes to bring in the votes by spit­ting venom at Eu­ro­pe, im­mi­gran­ts, Mu­slims, the wor­king class and school chil­dren. She dislikes "lower class” names such as Charmaine, Chantelle, Chardonnay and Tyler, and would keep her children away from kids with these names. Catch her mouthing off on a screen near you.

On a brighter note, not all EP can­di­da­tes are spou­ting bile and cam­pai­gning on ne­ga­ti­ve, vi­sce­ral is­sues. He­re's Ivana Bar­to­let­ti cam­paign­ing for sex­ual equal­ity in Eu­rope with a red um­brella flash mob in Rome. A gen­der pay gap of 16.4% across the Union means this issue is vital. 8 March was In­ter­na­tional Women's Day and hun­dreds of women with red um­brel­las lined up to for­m the equa­li­ty sign; = . Here's to hop­ing that can­di­da­tes with pro­gres­si­ve ideas and po­si­ti­ve cam­pai­gns make them­sel­ves heard above the white noise of the eu­ro­scep­tics.