|Brian Crowley in 2014|
|Member of the European Parliament|
4 March 1964 |
|Political party||Independent (since 2014)
Fianna Fáil (1993–2014)
|European Conservatives and Reformists (since 2014)|
|Alma mater||University College Cork|
Brian Crowley (born 4 March 1964) is an Irish politician and Member of the European Parliament (MEP) for the South constituency. He sits as an independent MEP after he was expelled from the Fianna Fáil parliamentary party in June 2014, when he left the Alliance of Liberals and Democrats for Europe (ALDE) group in the European Parliament and joined the European Conservatives and Reformists (ECR). He is a wheelchair-user as a result of an accident he suffered at age 16.
Crowley was born in Dublin in 1964, but was raised in Bandon, County Cork, where he attended Hamilton High School. He received a diploma in law in 1993 from University College Cork, and the following year he was nominated by the Taoiseach Albert Reynolds to the 20th Seanad Éireann. At the 1994 European Parliament election he was elected to the European Parliament for the Munster constituency. He has retained his seat at the three subsequent elections. He was a member of Ireland's Council of State from 1997 to 2004.
He was a member of the European Parliament's Alliance of Liberals and Democrats for Europe group in the European Parliament from 2009 to 2014. Crowley is a member of the European Parliament's Committee on Industry, Research and Energy and the delegation for relations with the United States. Crowley also serves as a substitute member of the Committee on Legal Affairs.
On 12 February 2009, the Committee on Legal Affairs of the European Parliament approved a report drafted by Brian Crowley to extend the copyright term of music recordings from 50 years to 95 years.
He was co-president of the Union for Europe of the Nations until 2009, when Fianna Fáil joined the ALDE group.
In June 2011, Crowley refused to release details of his expense and allowance claims as a member of the European Parliament.
Again in July 2011, Crowley declared to Fianna Fáil party colleagues, that he was available to run for the presidency, but had been advised by party colleague Fianna Fáil TD Willie O'Dea not to seek his party's nomination. In the context of failure to be nominated for the presidential election by his party, Crowley withdrew his candidature for the nomination.
From 2011 to 2013, Crowley had trouble with sores on his legs arising from his paralysis. These required repeated treatment which kept him out of the public eye. In July 2013 he said his health was improved and he intended to run for re-election in 2014.
In June 2014, he joined the European Conservatives and Reformists group in the European Parliament, against the wishes of the Fianna Fáil leadership. He lost the Fianna Fáil party whip on 24 June 2014. Fianna Fáil stated that the principles of the ECR group were incompatible with the party.
According to a report in The Irish Times on 15 December 2014, which described Crowley's voting record as enumerated on Votewatch EU, Crowley has the worst voting record of the Irish MEPs sitting in the European parliament. This has contributed to Ireland being ranked "bottom of the list of EU countries in terms of MEPs’ participation in plenary votes since the new parliament took office on July 1st ".
- "Brian Crowley". ElectionsIreland.org. Retrieved 29 September 2008.
- "Fianna Fáil’s only MEP has joined a Eurosceptic grouping led by Britain’s Tory party". TheJournal.ie. Retrieved 23 June 2014.
- O'Connor, Aidan (12 May 2009). "Crowley tells wavering voters to hang tough". Irish Independent. Retrieved 8 June 2009.
- "Crowley likely to join race for Áras". Cork Independent. 24 April 2011.
- "Mr. Brian Crowley". Oireachtas Members Database. Retrieved 29 September 2008.
- "Fianna Fáil MEP Crowley says he would like to run for president". The Irish Times. 29 September 2008. Retrieved 29 September 2008.
- "Music copyright to be extended to 95 years". European Parliament. 12 February 2009. Retrieved 16 February 2009.
- "Extending copyright is music to major labels' ears". The Irish Times. 23 January 2009. Retrieved 16 February 2009.
- Byrne, Luke (24 June 2011). "Two MEPs in President race refuse to give expense details". Irish Independent.
- Sheahan, Fionnan (29 July 2011). "Crowley seeks FF nod to join race for Aras". Irish Independent.
- Minihan, Mary (19 August 2011). "Crowley advised against Áras bid". The Irish Times.
- "Another fateful blow dealt to the Soldiers of Destiny". Irish Independent. 17 September 2011.
- "Michael D heads presidential poll but 33pc yet to decide". Irish Independent. 8 September 2011.
- Ó Fátharta, Conall (8 July 2013). "I wanted my legs amputated, says MEP Crowley". Irish Examiner. Retrieved 8 July 2013.
- Riegel, Ralph (8 July 2013). "Crowley denies feud with FF leader Martin". Irish Independent. Retrieved 8 July 2013.
- "Crowley angers Fianna Fáil by joining conservative euro group". RTÉ News. 23 June 2014.
- "Brian Crowley loses Fianna Fáil whip". RTÉ News. 24 June 2014.
- "Two Irish MEPs have worst voting record in European Parliament". The Irish Times. 15 December 2014.
T. J. Maher
|Member of the European Parliament for Munster
|New constituency||Member of the European Parliament for South