European Broadcasting Union organizes Eurovision debate for EU Commission

Martin Banks

Brussels (Brussels Morning) – The Eurovision debate for the Commission presidency candidates will occur at 3 PM in the European Parliament’s plenary chamber in Brussels, organized by the European Broadcasting Union (EBU). Participants include Walter Baier, Sandro Gozi, Ursula von der Leyen, Terry Reintke, and Nicolas Schmit. They will debate topics such as the economy, defence, climate, democracy, migration, and innovation. Questions will come from the audience, social media, and the two moderators, Martin Řezníček and Annelies Beck. The debate will feature a “Spotlight” segment for one-on-one questioning. A draw determined the order of speakers and the sequence of “spotlight” interviews.

The Eurovision debate between the lead candidates for the Commission presidency will take place from 3 PM in Parliament’s plenary chamber in Brussels. The candidates will speak in English, and interpretation will be provided in 24 languages. A draw on 16 May organized by the EBU in the European Parliament determined the position of the candidates on the stage for the debate, the first speaker on each topic, and the order of the “spotlight” interviews.

Who Are the Participants and Organizers?

The European Broadcasting Union (EBU), which is organizing the debate, has confirmed the participation of:

  • Walter Baier (Austria, European Left)
  • Sandro Gozi (Italy, Renew Europe Now)
  • Ursula von der Leyen (Germany, European People’s Party)
  • Terry Reintke (Germany, European Greens)
  • Nicolas Schmit (Luxembourg, Party of European Socialists)

What Topics Will Be Debated?

These five candidates will debate the following topics:

  • Economy and Jobs
  • Defence and Security
  • Climate and Environment
  • Democracy and Leadership
  • Migration and Borders
  • Innovation and Technology

How Will Questions Be Asked?

Questions will be asked by:

  • The audience in the plenary chamber
  • Viewers watching from events organized by Parliament’s Liaison Offices in EU member states
  • Social media submissions
  • The two moderators

Candidates will also face one-on-one questioning by the moderators in so-called “Spotlight” segments, a new feature of the Eurovision Debate 2024.

Who Are the Moderators?

The debate will be moderated by:

  • Martin Řezníček (Czech TV)
  • Annelies Beck (VRT, Belgium)

What Is the Order of Speakers and Interviews?

The first speaker in each topic segment will be:

  1. Nicolas Schmit
  2. Sandro Gozi
  3. Ursula von der Leyen
  4. Walter Baier
  5. Terry Reintke

The order of the “spotlight” interviews will be:

  1. Nicolas Schmit
  2. Sandro Gozi
  3. Terry Reintke
  4. Ursula von der Leyen
  5. Walter Baier

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Martin Banks is an experienced British-born journalist who has been covering the EU beat (and much else besides) in Brussels since 2001. Previously, he had worked for many years in regional journalism in the UK and freelanced for national titles. He has a keen interest in foreign affairs and has closely followed the workings of the European Parliament and MEPs in particular for some years.