Making Sense of the EU: The Achievements of the Convention

Issue Date October 2003
Volume 14
Issue 4
Page Numbers 57-70
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Building democracy at the supernational level is an unprecedented task, but so once was building democracy at the level of the modern state. By today’s standards we would not likely classify France, Britain, or the United States in the nineteenth century as “democratic,” but in the time they were in the forefront of democratic development. The same can be said for the European Union today, and the progress of the EU in the last half-century has been remarkable. Recent advancements by the Brussels Convention—reflected in the resulting draft treaty for a European Constitution—represent significant steps forward for entrenching the rule of law, the separation of powers, and the people’s input and participation in Europe’s supernational institutions.