'It's the Autonomy, Stupid!' A Modest Defense of Opinion 2/13 on EU Accession to the ECHR, and the Way Forward

16 German Law Journal 105 (2015)

U of Michigan Public Law Research Paper No. 439

44 Pages Posted: 22 Feb 2015 Last revised: 16 Jun 2015

Daniel Halberstam

University of Michigan Law School

Date Written: February 20, 2015

Abstract

Opinion 2/13 of the Court of Justice of the European Union (striking down the Draft Agreement on accession to the European Convention on Human Rights) has evoked widespread “outrage.” The Court’s Opinion is generally derided as “unsubstantiated,” purely “self-interested,” and “playground politics.” This Article disagrees with that assessment. The Article provides the first comprehensive legal analysis and constitutional reconstruction of the Opinion’s many objections to show why the Court’s concerns are mostly warranted. At the same time, however, the Article explains why accession to the ECHR is not only important for human rights, but also vital to save the European Union itself. Finally, the Article points the way forward by identifying the changes that must be, and can be, made to allow accession to proceed.

Keywords: Opinion 2/13, European Union, Constitutionalism, Common Foreign and Security Policy, European Convention on Human Rights, Accession, EU External Relations

Suggested Citation

Halberstam, Daniel, 'It's the Autonomy, Stupid!' A Modest Defense of Opinion 2/13 on EU Accession to the ECHR, and the Way Forward (February 20, 2015). 16 German Law Journal 105 (2015); U of Michigan Public Law Research Paper No. 439. Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=2567591 or http://dx.doi.org/10.2139/ssrn.2567591

Daniel Halberstam (Contact Author)

University of Michigan Law School ( email )

625 South State Street
342 Hutchins Hall
Ann Arbor, MI 48109-1215
United States
734-763-4408 (Phone)
734-763-9375 (Fax)

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