Thursday, 1 May 2014

Addressing the EU democratic deficit

Following a footnote in our local party's relay of the exposure of UKIP pseudo-facts, I would commend a recent posting in Liberal Democrat Voice. I must admit that my eyes glazed over after reading a few pages of the Lisbon  Treaty, but Nick Tyrone of the Electoral Reform Society persisted to pick out this gem:

there is a yellow card system working, created by the Lisbon Treaty, which means that if nine EU countries want to pause a piece of legislation, they can do.

This goes some way to counter the secrecy in which heads of government collaborate over new EU measures in the European Council. However, Nick goes on:

Problem with the yellow card system is that it is unwieldy and the time frames so limited; countries have eight weeks from the start of the legislative process to organise the rethink. We recommend a green card system, that means national parliaments can be proactive, as well as a red card system, which would allow legislation to be scrapped if an agreed upon number of reasoned opinions were against it.

The ERS report to which he comments is here in pdf form or as a video.

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