Harpenden MP Peter Lilley would accept the position of European commissioner 'if offered it'

Harpenden MP Peter Lilley would accept the position of European commissioner 'if offered it'

Harpenden MP Peter Lilley would accept the position of European commissioner 'if offered it'

First published in News by

Harpenden’s MP has voiced his desire to be appointed to one of the most influential jobs in the European Union.

Peter Lilley said on BBC’s Newsnight he would accept the position of being the UK’s next European commissioner if offered it.

Yet the Conservative said he had not had any contact from the higher echelons of Government about the post.

Mr Lilley’s comments come as each of the EU’s 28 countries prepares to appoint a representative to the commission, which is the executive body responsible for the day-to-day running of the EU,

Each commissioner holds the role for five years and other notable politicians to be appointed to the position in the past include Peter Mandelson and former Labour leader Neil Kinnock.

The term of the UK’s current commissioner, Baroness Catherine Ashton, runs out in October and David Cameron is currently mulling over who he will appoint to the £250,000-a-year role.

Mr Lilley, who served as a cabinet minister in the Major Government and has described himself as a Eurosceptic, appeared on the BBC programme last night to discuss David Cameron’s approach to the EU

When asked if he had thrown his hat into the ring for the commissioner job, the MP responded: "It is not up to me to put my name in the ring. If I was offered it I would certainly accept it because I think it is one of the most important jobs.

"I have talked to people but I have not been offered it or they have not come and talked to me. No, no, so I probably won't be it."

"Mr Lilley added: "But it is a terribly important job. It is important that we have someone with the right qualifications, who is not going to go native as soon as they get in the job - start working for a federal Europe rather than the sort of Europe Britain wants and who will nonetheless put our arguments cogently and forcefully within a bureaucracy, which has never heard the British arguments put."

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