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European Union Constitution - PowerPoint PPT Presentation

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Where do they go from here?. European Union Constitution. Decades of War. Franco-Prussian War WWI WWII. Verdun. Maybe this . . . . . . at least this much. Brief History of the EU. 1951, Treaty of Paris): European Coal and Steel Community (Community I)

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Where do they go from here?

European Union Constitution

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Decades of War

  • Franco-Prussian War

  • WWI

  • WWII

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Brief History of the EU

  • 1951, Treaty of Paris): European Coal and Steel Community (Community I)

    Belgium, West Germany, Luxemburg, France, Italy, Netherlands

  • 1957: Euratom (Community II), EEC (Community III)

  • 1967: Communities I, II, III merge; establishment of EU Commission, Council of Ministers

  • 1972: Direct elections to parliament

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Brief History (cont’d)

  • 1973: Denmark, Ireland, UK join

  • 1981: Greece joins

  • 1985: Schengen Agreement (excl. UK, Rep of Ireland; incl. Iceland, Norway, Switzerland)

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Brief History (cont’d)

  • 1986: Spain & Portugal join

  • 1995: Austria, Finland, Sweden join

  • 2002: EURO introduction

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Brief History (cont’d)

  • 2004: Cyprus, Malta, Estonia, Lithuania, Latvia, Czech Republic, Slovakia, Slovenia, Hungary, Poland (now 454 million EU citizens)

  • 2007: Bulgaria & Romania

  • Future: Croatia, Turkey (?)

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Brief History (cont’d)

  • 1952 European Defense Community; rejected in 1954 by France

  • 1961 UK applies for EU membership under Harold McMillan; vetoed by France in 1963

  • France & NATO

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Brief History (cont’d)

  • 2002-3 Constitutional Convention in Brussels

  • 2004 Constitution (Constitutional Treaty) signed by heads of gov’t in Rome (Treaty of Rome)

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Brief History (cont’d)

  • May 29, 2005: France rejects proposed constitution

    45.1% NO v. 24.2% YES

  • June 1, 2005: Netherlands rejects proposed constitution

    38.5% NO v. 24.3% YES

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Who Has Approved the Constitution?

  • Austria, Belgium, Cyprus,

  • Estonia, Germany, Greece,

  • Hungary, Italy, Latvia,

  • Lithuania, Luxembourg, Malta,

  • Slovakia, Slovenia, Spain (15)

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Who Has Yet to Vote?

  • Who has yet to vote? Denmark, Sweden, Finland, Czech Republic

  • Portugal, Republic of Ireland, UK, Poland (8)

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Important Question:

  • Who approves by referendum?

  • Who approves by parliament alone?

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Constitutional ConventionBrussels, 2002-3

  • Valery Giscard D’estaing, Thomas Jefferson & Benjamin Franklin

  • Federalist Papers? (ct. Gordon Brown who reportedly takes the Fed Papers on vacation.)

  • Your citizens “will one day build statues of you on horseback in the villages you all come from.”

  • Convention ended with draft but no agreements

  • No statues yet

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Why a Constitution for Europe?

  • Coherence out of patchwork of treaties

  • Overcome “democratic deficit”

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Why a Constitution (cont’d)?

  • Improvements:

    Parliament, QMV, Commission

  • More towards a “super-state”:

    foreign policy, presidency of Council of Ministers, “legal personality”

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Comparison: EU v. US Constitutions

  • 60,000+ words v 4543 words

  • Elegance? EU hardly looks like a traditional constitution

  • View of human nature (cf. Fed. Paper #10)

  • View of power (cf. Fed. Paper #51); comparative absence of separation of powers, checks and balances

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Comparison (cont’d)

  • Bill of Rights:

    U.S.: limited

    EU: expansive

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Comparison (cont’d)

  • Institutional comparison: EU hardly looks like a traditional government:

    U.S.: Executive, Legislative, Judicial + Bureaucracy

    EU: EU Commission, Council of Ministers, Parliament, Court of Justice

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Why did the EU Constitution Fail? Why Might it Fail?

  • Politics

  • Nationalism

    e.g. France, Netherlands, UK, Denmark, Poland

  • Fundamental Issues “Papered Over”

    e.g. foreign policy, nature of the European welfare state v. market economy, view of U.S., role of France & Germany, agricultural subsidies

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Failure? (cont’d)

  • No common culture (e.g. religion)

  • No proper debate, not understood by average citizen (not even read by average citizen)

  • Sense of arrogance & condescension

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  • Approval by sleight of hand (but the “game may be up”)

    Cf. 1992 Denmark and Treaty of Maastricht; 2002 Ireland and Treaty of Nice

  • Total rejection

    If so, this may mean “Europe” goes no farther

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Future (cont’d)

  • Partial approval, either in “slim-downed version” or as a result of “cherry picking”

  • Postponement

  • Should be considered in light of other European trends:

    Immigration, esp. Islamic

    Economic stagnation