Unworkable European Constitutional Revolution Proposed

The Union of European Federalists have issued a call for a constitutional revolution. What they want is for the European Constitution to enter into “force” before it has been ratified by all EU Member States.

The EU Treaties specify what areas (“competences”) can be legislated on at European level, the voting system and weight (“procedure”) and whether the measure thus adopted takes effect automatically in Member States (“direct effect”) or requires further enactment by Member States whose existing laws do not comport with European requirements (“indirect effect”). It is proposed that changes to such matters no longer require unanimity.

This proposal is unworkable in the extreme. It’s not clear that it’s even possible to conduct a vote where parties are legally committed to different voting systems, and disagree as to what they are competent to vote upon. Even if were possible, most European legislation is in the form of Directives, which are of indirect effect. Why would any non-consenting Member State bother implementing Directives in areas it never agreed to transfer to European-level control? Ultimately, all proposals for a European core of “deeper” co-operation will undermine the coherence of the internal market and compromise the purported benefits of integration in the first place.

The UEF does not recognise that the EU works by voluntary co-operation between Member State governments, and will not overnight be transformed into a federal polity where Member States have no say in legislation affecting them.

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