Schuman Foundation study: A Political Union for Europe?
A highly important recent paper by Robert Schuman Foundation co-written by Thierry Chopin, Jean-François Jamet, and François-Xavier Priollaud
Along with the crisis fundamental questions about the future of European integration have been raised. In order to recover their sovereignty vis-à-vis the markets and thereby the ability to decide about their future, the States of Europe – notably the euro zone members – have understood that they have to form a more coherent union. As a result the idea to form a banking union has progressed rapidly over the last few months. The debate continues on points of disagreement in terms of budgetary union (notably the timeliness of pooling part of the debt), but stricter, common rules have already been adopted and the European Stability Mechanism (ESM) is soon due to enter into force.
Given the transfer of competences that these joint measures imply, it is now impossible to elude the question of political union. European decisions must enjoy adequate legitimacy in the eyes of the citizen and decision-making mechanisms must be sufficiently simple and clear enough for them to be effective and transparent. Without this the citizens will not accept economic union and questions will continue to be asked about the political vision behind European decisions.