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Political legitimacy and European monetary union: contracts, constitutionalism and the normative logic of two-level games

Bellamy, R; Weale, A; (2015) Political legitimacy and European monetary union: contracts, constitutionalism and the normative logic of two-level games. JOURNAL OF EUROPEAN PUBLIC POLICY , 22 (2) 257 - 274. 10.1080/13501763.2014.995118. Green open access

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Abstract

The crisis of the euro area has severely tested the political authority of the European Union (EU). The crisis raises questions of normative legitimacy both because the EU is a normative order and because the construction of economic and monetary union (EMU) rested upon a theory that stressed the normative value of the depoliticization of money. However, this theory neglected the normative logic of the two-level game implicit in EMU. It also neglected the need for an impartial and publically acceptable constitutional order to acknowledge reasonable disagreements. By contrast, we contend that any reconstruction of the EU's economic constitution has to pay attention to reconciling a European monetary order with the legitimacy of member state governance. The EU requires a two-level contract to meet this standard. Member states must treat each other as equals and be representative of and accountable to their citizens on an equitable basis. These criteria entail that the EU's political legitimacy requires a form of demoicracy that we call ‘republican intergovernmentalism’. Only rules that could be acceptable as the product of a political constitution among the peoples of Europe can ultimately meet the required standards of political legitimacy. Such a political constitution could be brought about through empowering national parliaments in EU decision-making.

Type: Article
Title: Political legitimacy and European monetary union: contracts, constitutionalism and the normative logic of two-level games
Open access status: An open access version is available from UCL Discovery
DOI: 10.1080/13501763.2014.995118
Publisher version: http://dx.doi.org/10.1080/13501763.2014.995118
Additional information: Copyright © 2015 The Author(s). Published by Taylor & Francis. This is an Open Access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License (http://creativecommons.org/Licenses/by/4.0/), which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited. Permission is granted subject to the terms of the License under which the work was published. Please check the License conditions for the work which you wish to reuse. Full and appropriate attribution must be given. This permission does not cover any third party copyrighted material which may appear in the work requested.
Keywords: Democracy, legitimacy, social contract theory, political constitutionalism, euro crisis
UCL classification: UCL
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > UCL SLASH
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > UCL SLASH > Faculty of S&HS
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > UCL SLASH > Faculty of S&HS > Dept of Political Science
URI: https://discovery.ucl.ac.uk/id/eprint/1461241
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