Chapter 4 Practice essay question

Chapter 4 Question

First the increase, then the decrease in the law-making procedures are the product of a number of developments in the EU.

In explaining this statement, please consider how it is connected to the disputes about the choice of legal base and how these will be less problematic in the future.

Attempt this question before reading the answer guidance below.



Answer guide

Set out briefly what law-making procedures are, how and why they increased (democratic deficit of the European Parliament, more member states, need to get things done (internal market)). Note that you do not need to go into the details of each of the procedures themselves.

Whilst delegated and implementing procedures could be raised as relevant (inasmuch as they are procedures) they are not directly addressing the issues raised. Including them would not be wrong but you need to get the basics and main part of the answer set down first – addressing them would be the icing on the cake.

Include details of how law-making procedures have been increased (that new voting and law-making procedures have been introduced, in particular for the Council of Ministers – notably changes to Qualified Majority Voting.

Next, explain why they have been reduced – to try to make the EU more efficient and to reduce the large permutations of procedures possible.

Then address the last part of the question: what is the legal base? First define what this is, why it is important, and how it is or should be chosen. Then explain why with more procedures more disputes are likely and vice versa. The more different procedures and institutions involved and the higher the level of participation of those, the more possibilities there are to get it wrong. For example, where there is more than one legal base for the subject matter under consideration, the Council of Ministers could choose a legal base which denies or reduces the involvement of other partner on the law-making process, the EP. That in turn undermines the application of democracy in the EU. Here example cases are really required to do well.

See Foster on Chapter 4, section 4.10.1 for case examples (UK v Council (Hormones) and Commission v Council (Titanium Dioxide Directive)).