Teaching Comparative Government and Politics

Wednesday, March 11, 2009

A new EU treaty

Here's a way to consider the EU's Lisbon Treaty. These position statements and a little more research, some at the BBC web site, would be the basis for a debate or a writing assignment.

Viewpoints: Lisbon Treaty impact

"All but a few of the EU's 27 member states have ratified the Lisbon Treaty, which is aimed at streamlining EU institutions.

"But the reform treaty will not come into force unless all of them do so - and it still has to run the gauntlet of a second Irish referendum later this year. Irish voters rejected it last June. No other country put the treaty to a referendum.

"Here, as part of a series of viewpoints on EU issues, two European think-tank experts argue for and against the treaty.

"For -- Jean-Dminique Giuliani

"'The Lisbon Treaty will give Europe more democracy, more capacity to decide and act and more international prominence.

"'It will give national parliaments control over the European Commission. The commission will not be able to act in areas not expressly set out in the treaties...'

"Against -- Lorraine Mullally

"'The Lisbon Treaty represents a huge transfer of powers away from EU member states and is bad news for Europe.

"'In more than 60 areas of policy, countries lose the right to veto legislation they disagree with - on everything from transport to the rights of criminal suspects and aspects of foreign policy...'"

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