Great Britain

'Scandalous' Von der Leyen issued urgent warning about rushing through Brexit deal

Nicolas Bay, general secretary of the right-wing National Rally party led by Marine Le Pen, also claimed the amount of power residing in the Commission - which is effectively the EU's governing body - was "absolutely absurd", and highlighted the need for dramatic reforms. Mr Bay was speaking in the wake of widespread reports - including on Sky News - suggesting the Commission was ready to cut corners in the event of a deal being struck between EU negotiator Michel Barnier and UK counterpart Lord David Frost to implement it by the end of the year - bypassing the Parliament and member states.

He told Express.co.uk: "I can’t believe the Commission could conclude this agreement without having it ratified by the states.

"The mere fact that this is being considered would already be absolutely scandalous.

"It is obvious that, in general, the European Commission should systematically refer matters to the Council and to the states instead of acting alone."

Nicolas Bay Ursula von der Leyen

Nicolas Bay has told Ursula von der Leyen it would be "scandalous" to rush a deal through (Image: GETTY)

Michel Barnier

EU negotiator Michel Barnier (Image: GETTY)

He told Express.co.uk: "I can’t believe the Commission could conclude this agreement without having it ratified by the states.

"The mere fact that this is being considered would already be absolutely scandalous.

"It is obvious that, in general, the European Commission should systematically refer matters to the Council and to the states instead of acting alone."

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Marine Le Pen

Marine Le Pen, the leader of the right-wing National Rally party, formerly the National Front (Image: PA)

He explained: "We recently saw, within the framework of the agreement with the Latin American countries of Mercosur, the limits of this method: the states rightly felt seriously injured on the agricultural aspect and the agreement negotiated for years by the Commission, which wanted to conclude it at all costs, was buried.

"Naturally, in the case of Brexit, the stakes and the political importance of this agreement are such that the Commission’s ambitions for independence appear all the more worrying."

Mr Bay also said the amount of power which lays in the hands of unelected bureaucrats in Brussels was "perhaps the most serious flaw of the EU today" and "the greatest threat to the sovereignty of the member states".

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Marine Le Pen Nicolas Bay

Marine Le Pen and Nicolas Bay pictured together (Image: PA)

Lord David Frost

UK negotiator Lord David Frost (Image: GETTY)

He added: "We see the trend towards centralisation and harmonisation in many areas, to the detriment of the political, diplomatic and economic interests of most member states.

"The Commission is strengthening its powers and seeking to cut corners in all areas where states should nevertheless be sovereign, as stipulated in the treaties.

"And, cleverly, Brussels is playing on the frustration of the European Parliament, which knows itself to be the poor relation of the EU."

In order to strengthen itself, the Commission never hesitated to use the Parliament against the European Council, stirring up rivalry between the institutions, claimed Mr Bay.

Trade negotiations factfile

Trade negotiations factfile (Image: Express)

The consequences of such an approach could be seen with what Mr Bay described as the "blockage" on the European budget and the recovery plan by Hungary and Poland, which are threatening to veto the whole proposal in protest at the EU's investigation into controversial legal reforms in both countries.

He said: "The Parliament requires the Council to set up a conditionality mechanism for European funds to respect the rule of law, which is extremely dangerous and unacceptable to some states.

"Parliament is obviously guided by the Commission, which sees this as a way for it to be able to punish recalcitrant states."

Mr Bay concluded: "The EU must be fully reformed and the Commission put back in its place, that of a mere secretariat implementing Council decisions.

Viktor Orban

Viktor Orban's Hungary is at loggerheads with Brussels (Image: PA)

"The fact that Brussels has the legislative initiative, as well as the executive power, is absolutely absurd."

With the transition period coming to an end on December 31, a European Commission spokesman told Express.co.uk earlier this week: "Negotiations are ongoing.

"We are working hard for a deal. We are not going to speculate about dates.

"Michel Barnier has always said that there must be time at the end of the negotiations for the European Parliament and Council to have their say on any potential deal."

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