The Lisbon Treaty and its Consequences on the European Union Decision Making

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On 13 December 2007, the European heads of government signed the Lisbon Treaty, which was designed to make the European Union (EU) “more democratic , more transparent and more efficient” (BBC) after twelve new members have been added in 2004 and 2007. Before the treaty could enter into force, it had to be ratified by all EU members.
This essay will summarize the Lisbon Treaty and the governmental and democratic consequences it will have on the EU decision making. It intends to state that Europe has the wish to change and actively tries to do so and partly succeeding, but failing to do so entirely. The treaty has been a victory for Europe over the euro skeptics, but unfortunately will not be able to push Europe much further to the place it
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Also, there will be a European foreign minister, who’s official title will be the high representative for foreign policy after the British opposed to the title of “foreign minister”. Ironically, the new high representative for foreign policy turns out to be a Brit.
More importantly however, the requirement of having unanimity in a number of areas, such as fighting climate change, energy security and emergency aid, is no longer necessary. National vetoes will still apply in the areas of foreign, tax, and social policy. Nonetheless, the reforms conducted by the treaty do not only make the EU more efficient, but will also make it more democratic. The European Parliament is given more power, and will be able to co-decide. National parliaments will also be informed earlier on EU decisions, in order for them to be able to react more profound. (Volkery)
Also, there will be the “yellow card” procedure. This means that when one third of the national parliaments does not agree on a proposition of the European Commission due to subsidiarity, the national parliaments can pull out a “yellow card” which forces the European Commission (EC) to reconsider the proposition. When chosen by the EC to go through with the proposal, it needs to clarify the proposal and its decision to go through with it to the national parliaments.
Beside this procedure, the Dutch insisted on an “orange card” procedure as well.

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