With Brexit looming, James and Tom bid good riddance to two British members of the European Parliament they like the least: Daniel Hannan, a Conservative with a maniacal focus on Brexit; and Janice Atkinson, an independent who wants to Make Europe Great Again and who helps lead the far-right group created by Marine Le Pen and Geert Wilders.
Mujtaba Rahman, the Europe director for the Eurasia Group, lays out how nationalist populists still are poised to infiltrate democratic decision-making in Brussels and undermine it from within.
Rahman correctly forecast that Europe’s political leaders would save the euro currency union from collapse at the height of debt crisis in Greece. These days he foresees insurgents making significant gains in the upcoming European elections and cooperating in ways not seen before. That would create a “completely unprecedented” situation for the European Commission, he warns.
We also meet two people who knew Paweł Adamowicz, the murdered mayor of Gdansk and a beacon of tolerance in Poland. At Democracy Drinks in Brussels, Roland Freudenstein, the policy director of the Wilfried Martens Centre for European Studies, and Martin Mycielski of the Open Dialogue Foundation, reflect on the violent consequences of hateful politics and on the way Polish state-run media hounds the opposition.