Peter Mandelson, the UK’s new European Commissioner and current whipping boy of the UK’s anti-European factions, put on a star performance in Brussels on Friday during the first meeting of the new commissioners, 25 of them, who will start their new jobs in November.
In a great display of political word-smithing, Mandelson said as Trade Commissioner he would dedicate himself over the next five years to the cause of fair trade across the globe rather than concentrating on trying to sell the EU project to skeptical Britons. A worthy objective. But he told the BBC on Friday morning that he wanted to help the EU better explain itself to a skeptical public.
If there’s one big thing the EU continues to need it is convincing more people of its relevance. Mandelson can and should play a big role in communicating that key message. While his track record in UK politics is a bit iffy, he is a smooth operator, highly ambitious and guaranteed to get attention (especially in the UK).
He’d actually be pretty good as the ‘Communication Commissioner.’ I bet he could explain the benefits of straight bananas.