An EU Mechanism on Democracy, the Rule of Law, and Fundamental Rights: Assessing the Need and Possibilities for the Establishment of an EU Scoreboard on Democracy, the Rule of Law and Fundamental Rights

European Parliament, Research Paper PE 579328 European Added Value Unit EPRS, April 2016

University of Groningen Faculty of Law Research Paper 2016-18

234 Pages Posted: 9 Apr 2016 Last revised: 1 Dec 2016

Petra Bard

Central European University (CEU)

Sergio Carrera

Centre for European Policy Studies

Elspeth Guild

Radboud University Nijmegen - Faculty of Law; Kingsley Napley - Department of Immigration; The British Institute of International and Comparative Law; London School of Economics & Political Science (LSE)

Dimitry Kochenov

University of Groningen - Faculty of Law

Date Written: April 7, 2016

Abstract

The European Union is founded on a set of common principles of democracy, the rule of law, and fundamental rights, as enshrined in Article 2 of the Treaty on the European Union. Whereas future Member States are vetted for their compliance with these values before they accede to the Union, no similar method exists to supervise adherence to these foundational principles after accession. EU history proved that this ‘Copenhagen dilemma’ was far from theoretical. EU Member State governments’ adherence to foundational EU values cannot be taken for granted. Violations may happen in individual cases, or in a systemic way, which may go as far as overthrowing the rule of law. Against this background the European Parliament initiated a Legislative Own-Initiative Report on the establishment of an EU mechanism on democracy, the rule of law and fundamental rights and proposed among others a Scoreboard on the basis of common and objective indicators by which foundational values can be measured. This Research Paper assesses the need and possibilities for the establishment of an EU Scoreboard, as well as its related social, economic, legal and political ‘costs and benefits.’

Keywords: EU Law, Copenhagen dilemma, Rule of Law, Democracy, European Parliament, Scoreboard

Suggested Citation

Bard, Petra and Carrera, Sergio and Guild, Elspeth and Kochenov, Dimitry, An EU Mechanism on Democracy, the Rule of Law, and Fundamental Rights: Assessing the Need and Possibilities for the Establishment of an EU Scoreboard on Democracy, the Rule of Law and Fundamental Rights (April 7, 2016). European Parliament, Research Paper PE 579328 European Added Value Unit EPRS, April 2016; University of Groningen Faculty of Law Research Paper 2016-18. Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=2760371

Petra Bard

Central European University (CEU) ( email )

Nador utca 9
Budapest, H-1051
Hungary

Sergio Carrera

Centre for European Policy Studies ( email )

1 Place du Congres
B-1000 Brussels, 1000
Belgium
+32 2 229 39 26 (Phone)

Elspeth Guild

Radboud University Nijmegen - Faculty of Law ( email )

Postbus 9049
6500 KK Nijmegen
Netherlands
024-3611357 (Phone)
024-3611423 (Fax)

Kingsley Napley - Department of Immigration ( email )

Knight's Quarter
14 St. John's Lane
London EC1M 4AJ
United Kingdom
+44 (0)20 7814 1200 (Phone)
+44 (0)20 7490 2288 (Fax)

HOME PAGE: http://www.kingsleynapley.co.uk/our-people/the-partners/elspeth-guild.htm

The British Institute of International and Comparative Law ( email )

Charles Clore House
17 Russell Square
London WC1B 5JP
United Kingdom

London School of Economics & Political Science (LSE)

Houghton Street
London, WC2A 2AE
United Kingdom

Dimitry Kochenov (Contact Author)

University of Groningen - Faculty of Law ( email )

Oude Kijk in 't Jatstraat 26
Groningen, 9712 EK
Netherlands

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