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The European Parliament and National Parliaments: Conflict or cooperation?

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The relations between the European Parliament and the national parliaments were not free, in the past, from mutual neglect and sometimes jealousy. Only in the 1990s, after Maastricht, were foundations laid with a view to a more rational coexistence, and possibly cooperation. The chapter examines this evolution, including the experience of parliamentary participation in the constitutional convention and the claim of national parliaments for a more substantial involvement in EU affairs. The EP, after the elections of 2004, has taken first steps in order to meet the new challenge. The prospects for an improvement of relations between the European Parliament and the national parliaments are positive. They will be based on an orientation favouring policy issues rather than ideological controversies. If the European Constitution will be enacted, the role of the NPs will be considerably increased. If not, in order to avoid them falling back into their former role perception, the EP and the NPs could examine how to enhance their cooperation on a sub-constitutional pragmatic level.

Document Type: Research Article


Affiliations: University of Heidelberg

Publication date: October 1, 2005


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