Tomorrow the Commission launches its contribution to the ‘Future of Europe’ debate or how we learnt to stop worrying and love the Constitution. A friend has seen the documents and sent me the following precis,
I – CONTENTS
1) Communautarisation of the Cooperation Policy for police and justice (3rd pillar) (initiative of the single Commission and vote by a qualified majority)
2) Common purchase of weapons for the “European army”, which is obviously a prelude to the communitarisation of the Defence policy and therefore of the Foreign Policy.
3) Simplified access to the documents of the Union
4) The revival of a common policy of immigration on the basis of the Amsterdam Treaty
5) The Commission also prepares a list of all “barriers” which remain to be suppressed in order to make the single internal market of the Union.(That’ll be tax harmonisation to you and me).
II - STRATEGY
This “plan” of reanimation would take place in two stages:
1) In 2007, on the occasion of the fiftieth anniversary of the European Community, the European governments will make a “Political Statement” on the model of the Messina Statement of 1955, in which Italy, Belgium, France, the Netherlands, Luxemburg and Germany had announced the creation of the European Community.
In this new Statement, Member States would recall what are the fundamental goals of the Union and would require themselves to respect them. (Which looks very much like the “principle of loyal cooperation” enshrined in the Constitution)
2) On the basis of this statement, also in 2007, States would begin work of “grooming” the rejected constitutional treaty. The new legal bases of the Union would be therefore ready in 2008.
Brussels considers that referendum is not the best way of ratification “because the experience shows, as it was the case in France, that numerous citizens taking part in the referendum do not vote on the subject but on the Government.”