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Thursday, June 27, 2013

Federalism and Solving the Democratic Deficit: Causing Bad E.U. Legislation?

One major criticism of the E.U. has concerned its “democratic deficit.” The European Commission, the E.U.’s executive branch, has taken most of the criticism because the bureaucrats are not elected. Even though the European Council consists of elected state executives, the state legislatures are viewed as “closer to the people” and therefore more democratic. At the E.U. level, the European Parliament is the most directly democratic, as the EP’s representatives are directly elected by E.U. citizens. Therefore, one means of reducing the “democratic deficit” has been to increase the Parliament’s authority relative to those of the Commission and the Council. Lest it be thought that this solution has no drawbacks, the case of whether E.U. ships should be permitted to be beached for recycling in South Asia illustrates a problem.

From: "Federalism and the Democratic Deficit: The E.U. as Suboptimal?"