BRUSSELS, Sept. 17 (UPI) -- The European Parliament, by an overwhelming margin, elected Jose Barroso to a second five-year term as European Commission president.
The Portuguese politician claimed a solid majority in his bid to return to office, claiming 382 votes from the 736-member body, the EUObserver reported Thursday. Members voting against him numbered 219 and 117 members abstained.
Barroso overcame criticism that he was a weak president who bowed to requests made by larger EU members.
He thanked members their "expression of confidence" and pledged to work "with all political groups."
Saying his re-election gives the commission and its president based in Brussels "great authority," Barroso said, "I will use that (political) capital for more energy for Europe."