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"Decision Making in Europe: Were Spain and Poland Right to Stop the Constitution in December 2003?"

Ade, Florian. (2005) "Decision Making in Europe: Were Spain and Poland Right to Stop the Constitution in December 2003?". In: UNSPECIFIED, Austin, Texas. (Unpublished)

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    This paper tries to explain why Spain and Poland stopped the Draft Constitution for the European Union in December 2003 and discusses whether this action was compatible with these countries long term interests. The author finds that the decline in power – measured by a power index – arising for Spain and Poland when going from the Nice Treaty to the Draft Constitution cannot explain their veto. While the two countries lose power when shifting from Nice to the Draft Constitution other countries’ power shrinks even more. Other measures - passage probability, blocking leverage and fairness - cannot explain the two countries’ opposition either. This paper contends that the Spanish and Polish rejection can be explained by the weakness of government in the Polish and the need for a reelection topic in the Spanish case. Furthermore this paper asserts that the Spanish and Polish government’s veto was against the medium and long term interest of their own countries. Poland and Spain must have been able to anticipate that the Nice Treaty would not last due to most EU countries’ dislike of it. An analysis of reasonable alternative voting schemes in the EU finds that Spain and Poland would not have been better off in any of these cases and worse off in most; under the voting rules agreed upon under the Irish presidency in June 2004 the two countries are weaker than under the Draft Constitution.

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    Item Type: Conference or Workshop Item (UNSPECIFIED)
    Subjects for non-EU documents: EU policies and themes > Treaty reform > Constitution for Europe
    Countries > Spain
    EU policies and themes > EU institutions & developments > institutional development/policy > decision making/policy-making
    Countries > Poland
    Subjects for EU documents: UNSPECIFIED
    EU Series and Periodicals: UNSPECIFIED
    EU Annual Reports: UNSPECIFIED
    Conference: European Union Studies Association (EUSA) > Biennial Conference > 2005 (9th), March 31-April 2, 2005
    Depositing User: Phil Wilkin
    Official EU Document: No
    Language: English
    Date Deposited: 16 Jun 2005
    Page Range: p. 30
    Last Modified: 15 Feb 2011 17:26

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