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The European integration project and the UK, Denmark and Ireland accession to the European Union: How did they Affect each other? A National Parliaments Perspective

Daniela Corona

The European integration project has progressively and constantly been expanded over the years. If initially the Community's activities were confined to the creation of a common market in coal and steel between the six founder members (Belgium, France, Germany, Italy, Luxembourg and the Netherlands), nowadays the EU counts twenty‐seven (Croatia is expected to become the EU's twenty‐eighth member on 1 July 2013) and its competences have been greatly extended by the successive rounds of Treaty changes. In this context, the National Parliaments (NPs) have lost out due to the transfer of policy‐making powers, and in particular, legislative powers to the EU‐level. For this reason, over the years, two major developments regarding NPs participation in the EU system occurred both at EU and domestic levels, namely, the NPs role under the Proportionality and Subsidiarity Principles and the NPs scrutiny over their related executives.The paper intends to analyze this second aspect, in particular as of UK, Ireland and Denmark accession to the EU. After having analyzed the setting up of specialized committees of EU Affairs and the mechanism of the NPs scrutiny reserve across EU Member States, the paper will examines the role, the practice and the modus operandi of the UK House of Lords and House of Commons, the Danish Folketing and the Irish Oireachtas in considering EU matters. It will try to answer to the reverse question: to what extent did the monitoring of NPs over the EU matters really affect the processes of policy‐ making in the EU?



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