The outcome of the latest European Council and the political agreement on the EU's long-term budget drew a broadly positive response from lead MEPs of the European Parliament's three largest groups Tuesday morning. Representatives of other groups were more critical. Nearly all came down hard on the United States over weekend press reports of its spying activities.
In the regular debrief debate after a European Council with Commission President Barroso and European Council President Van Rompuy, EPP, S&D and ALDE leaders welcomed the summit's recognition that youth employment schemes should take priority and that, after much prodding from MEPs, every euro of the EU's long-term budget must be well spent. However, they also stressed the need for further work to tackle social problems, improve access to finance for business, and spur progress towards completing the banking union.
Greens and GUE group leaders, by contrast denounced the budget deal, arguing that it missed the real targets of addressing youth unemployment, other social concerns and environment protection.
The ECR and EFD representatives argued not only that youth unemployment would not be solved by more EU money, but that the EU itself was partly responsible for it.