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The Schüssel Era in Austria

Günter Bischof
Fritz Plasser

I. Personality and Leadership

Unremarkably Remarkable, Remarkably Unremarkable: Schüssel as Austria’s Foreign Policymaker in a Time of Transition

Reinhard Heinisch

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Within [the constraints of European Council meetings] Wolfgang Schüssel was the omnipresent stage director, who determined the mise-en-scène, set the tone and manipulated the script as and when he saw appropriate. Schüssel’s influence was apparent from the very beginning, when the Presidency first outlined its ideas about the agenda at the end of April [of 2006]. It was typical of the chancellor’s style that he chose to ignore the Council’s rules of procedure […] As a result, the tone was, and to a large extent remained, Schüssel speak rather than Council Secretariat speak […]. The section on Justice and Home Affairs was not “Justice and Home Affairs,” let alone an “Area of Freedom, Security, and Justice,” but “Europe Protects” […]. In the weeks that followed, the chancellor continued to ride roughshod through the post-[Council of] Seville procedures […]. Schüssel also tried to determine the wording of the Conclusions at several crucial points […]. Suffice to say, that as far as the...

© innsbruck university press, 2010

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