Only 12 members of the Socialist Group voted in support of the position adopted by Labour MEPs Alfred Sant, Miriam Dalli and Marlene Mizzi – a sign of growing isolation.
Labour MEPs clearly failed to convince even their own colleagues that the resolution calling for the Police Commissioner to investigate the actions of Minister Konrad Mizzi and the Prime Minister’s Chief of Staff Keith Schembri was not in Malta’s interest.
The 12 Socialist MEPs who voted against the resolution on the rule of law in Malta were outnumbered by 38 Socialist MEPs who voted in favour. These included Ana Gomes, a member of the Committee of Inquiry into Money Laundering, Tax Avoidance and Tax Evasion (PANA).
The majority of Socialist MEPs (117) abstained on the resolution. These included Gianni Pitella, the group’s leader.
The bulk of MEPs who opposed the resolution and thus supported the stance of the three Labour MEPs came from UKIP members in the Europe of Freedom and Direct Democracy group.
These included former party leader Paul Nuttal. But Nigel Farage did not participate in the vote. In total, 18 members of the EFDD voted against the resolution while 21 MEPs, mainly hailing from the Italian Cinque Stelle voted in favour.
Other opponents of the resolution on the rule of law in Malta included three MEPs representing the neo Nazi Golden Dawn and French far right academic Bruno Gollnisch, who in 2007 was condemned on holocaust denial charges. Marine Le Pen’s father Jean Marie did not participate in the vote.
Most MEPs representing the Europe of Nations and Freedom which includes the French National Front abstained in the vote on Malta.
But MEPs representing Geert Wilder’s Freedom Party, which is linked to the European Alliance for Freedom) voted against the resolution, in contrast to Lega Nord leader Matteo Salvini who voted in favour.
All 44 Green MEPs, and all the 201 EPP MEPs voted in favour of the resolution. Only one liberal MEP abstained, while 59 voted in favour. The resolution was also supported by 42 of 47 MEPs representing the radical left. The European Conservatives were split between the Tories who largely supported the resolution and the Polish Law and Justice MEPs who abstained.