|A typically busy session of the parliament in Strasbourg|
As the European Parliament's constitutional Affairs Committee met to discuss the addition of 18 new MEP's, it was pointed out to them that a mistake in the text of the treaty means that not 18, but 18,000 new deputies are to be appointed. Throughout the EU institutions there is panic as nobody wants to go through the long process of negotiating and ratifying the Treaty, just four months after it came into effect and the Constitutional Affairs Committee has "reluctantly" accepted that the easiest way out of the situation is to go ahead and create the positions, hoping that an amendment can be put in place by 2020 to reduce the number of MEPs to a more manageable figure of 784.
According to one member of the Committee, who wanted his identity protected, "It's all the fault of the member states. You would have thought that someone, anyone in one of the 27 states would have actually read the treaty and spotted the error, after all it is a huge error and it will cause us a gigantic headache." when challenged that the parliamentarians should have read the Lisbon Treaty, the anguished deputy replied, "Are you joking? If we actually read any of the crap that passes over our desks, we'd be suicidal. I tried to read it, but even by our standards, it was truly dreadful. Whoever drafted it should be shot for crimes against language. Personally, I think it was drafted in Klingon and put into Google Translate."
The deputies feel that, to avoid another long ratification process, they have no choice, other than to allow the 18,000 to take their seats, but this is a logistical nightmare, according to sources in the Parliament. Brussels journal has been told that the Parliament is to take over Brussels Expo, saying, "It's going to be impossible to house 18,000 new members and all their staff, interns et cetera, so we're going to flat pack them at Hysel. The interns will be warehoused at Tour and Taxis."
Selecting the new members is also proving a challenge as the Treaty is unclear on how they should be selected. One proposal is to give a seat to anyone who has ever stood for election to the EP, another is to select random citizens, as a form of jury service. A British MEP said, "It actually is very comparable to jury service, as you're trapped in a room with people you don't like and sit listening to outrageous nonsense and deception. On the other hand, the food is better here and there's plenty of booze, so that's a huge plus in my book."
However, Angela Merkel is furious about the move, as Germany will have its national representation reduced by three deputies, at the same time as every other nation gains several hundred extra members. When we asked representatives of many nations deputies about the Deutschland deputy decrease, most of them giggled and tried, unsuccessfully, to look concerned.