The European Parliament’s plenary session voted on Tuesday on the proposal, among other things, to abolish unanimity in European Council decision-making. Fidesz MEP László Trócsányi pointed out that this proposal is based on a completely unacceptable and flawed approach. Unanimity is not introduced into the treaties for no reason; it is a guarantee for Member States to protect their national interests.
The decision-making mechanism of the European Union was enshrined in the founding treaties after thorough negotiations between the Member States. “The member states are the masters of the Treaties, they decide what part of their sovereignty the European Union may exercise and in what areas, in accordance with their constitutions.
The maintenance of unanimity in certain strategically important areas is enshrined in the Treaties for essential reasons,”
László Trócsányi stressed.
Photo: Facebook/László Trócsányi
, where all EU Member States have to agree, is one of the voting rules applicable to the European Council. The council has to vote unanimously on a number of policy areas which the Member States consider to be sensitive. The policy areas where the council acts unanimously are exhaustively listed by the treaties. A limited number of policy areas considered to be sensitive remain subject to unanimity voting: taxation; social security or social protection; the accession of new EU Member States; Common Foreign and Security Policy (CFSP), including Common Security and Defense Policy (CSDP); and operational police cooperation between Member States.
“A negative vote in unanimous decision-making is not an obstacle to common EU action, but a natural part of the decision-making process. Unanimity serves to ensure that Member States speak with one voice on key issues.
Unanimity is also necessary to protect the national interests of small and medium-sized Member States in particular, and to counterbalance the tendency of larger Member States to dominate,”
emphasized the politician.
According to Trócsányi, the report is based on the wrong approach: “It is a substitute for unanimity, as only unanimity of Member States would allow a move to qualified majority voting in new areas,” he concluded.
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