The European Commission (EC) is the executive branch of the European Union, responsible for proposing legislation, enforcing EU laws and directing the union's administrative operations. Commissioners swear an oath at the European Court of Justice in Luxembourg City, pledging to respect the treaties and to be completely independent in carrying out their duties during their mandate. The Commissioners are proposed by the Council of the European Union, on the basis of suggestions made by the national governments, and then appointed by the European Council after the approval of the European Parliament. It is common, although not a formal requirement, that the commissioners have previously held senior political positions, such as being a member of the European Parliament or a government minister.
This EU institution operates as a cabinet government, with 27 members of the Commission (informally known as "commissioners"). There is one member per member state, but members are bound by their oath of office to represent the general interest of the EU as a whole rather than their home state. One of the 27 is the Commission President (currently Ursula von der Leyen) proposed by the European Council and elected by the European Parliament. The Council of the European Union then nominates the other members of the Commission in agreement with the nominated President, and the 27 members as a single body are then subject to a vote of approval by the European Parliament. The current Commission is the Von der Leyen Commission, which took office in December 2019, following the European Parliament elections in May of the same year.
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