Jason OMahony - Irish political blogger, Irish politics, EU politics
 

European Union 2.0?

Posted by Jason O on Jul 9, 2016 in Brexit Referendum, British Politics, European Union, Irish Politics |

So, if we were to reset the European Union, what would it look like?

We, the peoples of the sovereign nations of Europe, and members of the European Union, declare the following:

That we recognize, in the ballots of the people of the United Kingdom in their referendum on the European question, that the future of the European Union must be debated.

We also recognize that in casting their ballots they raised questions about European integration which have been raised with equal concern and passion by other peoples in other member states of the union.

Accepting these facts to be true, the European Council, being the representatives of the peoples and national parliaments of the nations of the EU, and its highest body, declares the following to be the basic laws of the policy of the European Union:

The Council recognizes that the European Union is a community of sovereign democratic nations, and that those nations, at the behest of their people, are the primary source of democratic legitimacy of the union. Some of those nations may wish to integrate to different degrees from others. The EU will respect the sovereign right of each nation to determine its own level of integration, or to withhold participation.

The Council recognizes that no new country may join the European Union without the consent of the national parliaments of all existing member states.

The Council accepts that whilst some member states may wish to cooperate on defence issues, no member state or its armed or security forces shall be obliged to participate without the consent of that nation’s national parliament. The European Union shall not have the power to introduce conscription.

The Council believes that the European Court of Justice exists to interpret the laws of the union as determined by the member states. Therefore, voting by a majority of both member states and population, the Council may overturn any ruling of the European Court of Justice.

The Council also believes that the national parliaments are the indispensable voice of the people of the member states, and so a majority of national parliaments representing a majority of the population of the EU may vote to suspend or abolish any existing EU directive or regulation, or block any proposed one.

The Council acknowledges the unique role of the European Parliament, and so grants to it the right to initiate legislation which may only become law if passed by the European Council and not blocked by the national parliaments as per the preceding clause.

The Council concedes the question of the democratic legitimacy of the European Commission. It therefore announces that the President of the European Commission shall be elected by the people of the European Union on the same days as the European Parliament elections. A method of nomination of candidates may be decided by a majority of the national parliaments.

The Council affirms the right of any European Union citizen to renounce their EU citizenship, and all the treaty rights attached to it.

Finally, the Council proclaims that no member state shall be forced to accept migrants without its consent.

We believe that this declaration, which we commit to transcribing into a binding treaty, shall recognize the modern aspirations of Europeans and the appropriate balance between the union and the sovereign member states.

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