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The European Constitution Project from the Perspective of Constitutional Political Economy

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  • Lars P. Feld

    ()
    (Faculty of Business Administration and Economics, Philipps Universitaet Marburg)

Abstract

Three topics of a European constitution are discussed. First, basic arguments from constitutional political economy that aim at restricting representatives’ potential misuse of powers in a European Union with extended competencies are summarized. Since a European demos does not yet exist, an extension of competencies of the European Parliament is not sufficient in order to legitimate political decisions at the EU level. The introduction of elements of direct democracy in the European constitution would shape the creation of such a demos and lead to a stronger control of the European legislature and executive. Second, the introduction of direct democracy in the European constitution is proposed in order to reduce the European democratic deficit. Third, the creation of a European federation requires a more transparent assignment of competencies and rules to resolve conflicts between different centers of power. A European federation should be organized according to the principles of competitive federalism.

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File URL: http://www.uni-marburg.de/fb02/makro/forschung/gelbereihe/artikel/2004-15-EuropeanConstFinal_gesamt.pdf
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Bibliographic Info

Paper provided by Philipps-Universität Marburg, Faculty of Business Administration and Economics, Department of Economics (Volkswirtschaftliche Abteilung) in its series Marburg Working Papers on Economics with number 200415.

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Length: 28 pages
Date of creation: 2004
Date of revision:
Handle: RePEc:mar:volksw:200415

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Keywords: European Constitutional Convention; Bill of Rights; Separation of Powers; Competitive Federalism; Referendums; European demos.;

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References

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  1. Hans-Werner Sinn, 2001. "The New Systems Competition," CESifo Working Paper Series 623, CESifo Group Munich.
  2. Richard Baldwin; Paul Krugman, 2001. "Agglomeration, Integration and Tax Harmonization," IHEID Working Papers 01-2001, Economics Section, The Graduate Institute of International Studies.
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  6. Blomberg, S.B. & Hess, G.D., 1999. "The Impact of Voter Initiatives on Economic Activity," Papers 99-11, Wellesley College - Department of Economics.
  7. Feld, Lars P, 2000. "Steuerwettbewerb und seine Auswirkungen auf Allokation und Distribution," Beiträge zur Finanzwissenschaft, Mohr Siebeck, Tübingen, edition 1, volume 10, number urn:isbn:9783161473852, July.
  8. Matsusaka, John G, 2000. "Fiscal Effects of the Voter Initiative in the First Half of the Twentieth Century," Journal of Law and Economics, University of Chicago Press, vol. 43(2), pages 619-50, October.
  9. Lars P. Feld & Justina A.V. Fischer & Gebhard Kirchgässner, 2006. "The Effect of Direct Democracy on Income Redistribution:Evidence for Switzerland," STICERD - Political Economy and Public Policy Paper Series 23, Suntory and Toyota International Centres for Economics and Related Disciplines, LSE.
  10. Feld, Lars P. & Schaltegger, Christoph A. & Schnellenbach, Jan, 2008. "On government centralization and fiscal referendums," European Economic Review, Elsevier, vol. 52(4), pages 611-645, May.
  11. Hans-Werner Sinn & Frank Westermann, 2000. "Two Mezzogiornos," CESifo Working Paper Series 378, CESifo Group Munich.
  12. Feld, Lars P, 2000. " Tax Competition and Income Redistribution: An Empirical Analysis for Switzerland," Public Choice, Springer, vol. 105(1-2), pages 125-64, October.
  13. Lars P. Feld & Gebhard Kirchgassner, 1999. "Public Debt and Budgetary Procedures: Top Down or Bottom Up? Some Evidence from Swiss Municipalities," NBER Chapters, in: Fiscal Institutions and Fiscal Performance, pages 151-180 National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  14. Guido Tabellini, 2003. "Principles of Policymaking in the European Union: an Economic Perspective," Levine's Working Paper Archive 506439000000000157, David K. Levine.
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  16. Matsusaka, John G & McCarty, Nolan M, 2001. "Political Resource Allocation: Benefits and Costs of Voter Initiatives," Journal of Law, Economics and Organization, Oxford University Press, vol. 17(2), pages 413-48, October.
  17. Bruno S. Frey & Alois Stutzer, 2000. "Happiness, Economy and Institutions," CESifo Working Paper Series 246, CESifo Group Munich.
  18. Anthony M. Marino & John G. Matsusaka, 2005. "Decision Processes, Agency Problems, and Information: An Economic Analysis of Capital Budgeting Procedures," Review of Financial Studies, Society for Financial Studies, vol. 18(1), pages 301-325.
  19. Matthias Benz & Alois Stutzer, 2004. "Are Voters Better Informed When They Have a Larger Say in Politics? -- Evidence for the European Union and Switzerland," Public Choice, Springer, vol. 119(1_2), pages 31-59, 04.
  20. Kessler, Anke, 2003. "Representative versus Direct Democracy: The Role of Informational Asymmetries," CEPR Discussion Papers 3911, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
  21. Persson, Torsten & Roland, Gerard & Tabellini, Guido, 1997. "Separation of Powers and Political Accountability," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, MIT Press, vol. 112(4), pages 1163-1202, November.
  22. Dennis C. Mueller, 2003. "Rights and Citizenship in the European Union," CESifo Working Paper Series 896, CESifo Group Munich.
  23. Feld, Lars P. & Kirchgassner, Gebhard, 2000. "Direct democracy, political culture, and the outcome of economic policy: a report on the Swiss experience," European Journal of Political Economy, Elsevier, vol. 16(2), pages 287-306, June.
  24. Sinn, Hans-Werner, 1997. "The selection principle and market failure in systems competition," Munich Reprints in Economics 19854, University of Munich, Department of Economics.
  25. Besley, Timothy & Coate, Stephen, 2008. "Issue Unbundling via Citizens' Initiatives," International Quarterly Journal of Political Science, now publishers, vol. 3(4), pages 379-397, December.
  26. Wellisch,Dietmar, 2000. "Theory of Public Finance in a Federal State," Cambridge Books, Cambridge University Press, number 9780521630351, October.
  27. Lars P Feld & Gebhard Kirchgässner, 2001. "The political economy of direct legislation: direct democracy and local decision-making," Economic Policy, CEPR & CES & MSH, vol. 16(33), pages 329-367, October.
  28. Pommerehne, Werner W., 1978. "Institutional approaches to public expenditure : Empirical evidence from Swiss municipalities," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, vol. 9(2), pages 255-280, April.
  29. Charles B. Blankart & Dennis C. Mueller, 2002. "Alternativen der parlamentarischen Demokratie," Perspektiven der Wirtschaftspolitik, Verein für Socialpolitik, vol. 3(1), pages 1-21, 02.
  30. McKay, David, 2001. "Designing Europe: Comparative Lessons from the Federal Experience," OUP Catalogue, Oxford University Press, number 9780199244355.
  31. Kiewiet, D Roderick & Szakaly, Kristin, 1996. "Constitutional Limitations on Borrowing: An Analysis of State Bonded Indebtedness," Journal of Law, Economics and Organization, Oxford University Press, vol. 12(1), pages 62-97, April.
  32. Stefan Voigt, . "Iudex Calculat: The ECJ's Quest for Power," German Working Papers in Law and Economics 2003-1-1066, Berkeley Electronic Press.
  33. Pommerehne, Werner W & Weck-Hannemann, Hannelore, 1996. " Tax Rates, Tax Administration and Income Tax Evasion in Switzerland," Public Choice, Springer, vol. 88(1-2), pages 161-70, July.
  34. Lars P. Feld & Stefan Voigt, 2003. "Economic Growth and Judicial Independence: Cross Country Evidence Using a New Set of Indicators," CESifo Working Paper Series 906, CESifo Group Munich.
  35. Matsusaka, John G, 1992. "Economics of Direct Legislation," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, MIT Press, vol. 107(2), pages 541-71, May.
  36. Kirchgassner, Gebhard & Pommerehne, Werner W., 1996. "Tax harmonization and tax competition in the European Union: Lessons from Switzerland," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, vol. 60(3), pages 351-371, June.
  37. Matsusaka, John G, 1995. "Fiscal Effects of the Voter Initiative: Evidence from the Last 30 Years," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 103(3), pages 587-623, June.
  38. Charles B. Blankart & Christian Kirchner, 2003. "The Deadlock of the EU Budget: An Economic Analysis of Ways In and Ways Out," CESifo Working Paper Series 989, CESifo Group Munich.
  39. Levmore, Saul, 1992. "Bicameralism: When are two decisions better than one?," International Review of Law and Economics, Elsevier, vol. 12(2), pages 145-162, June.
  40. Feld, Lars P. & Matsusaka, John G., 2003. "Budget referendums and government spending: evidence from Swiss cantons," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, vol. 87(12), pages 2703-2724, December.
  41. Lars P. Feld & John G. Matsusaka, 2000. "Budget Referendums and Government Spending: Evidence from Swiss," CESifo Working Paper Series 323, CESifo Group Munich.
  42. Charles Blankart, 2000. "The Process of Government Centralization: A Constitutional View," Constitutional Political Economy, Springer, vol. 11(1), pages 27-39, March.
  43. Kirchgassner, Gebhard, 1994. "Constitutional Economics and Its Relevance for the Evolution of Rules," Kyklos, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 47(3), pages 321-39.
  44. Steunenberg, Bernard, 1992. "Referendum, Initiative, and Veto Power: Budgetary Decision Making in Local Government," Kyklos, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 45(4), pages 501-29.
  45. Feld, Lars P & Savioz, Marcel R, 1997. "Direct Democracy Matters for Economic Performance: An Empirical Investigation," Kyklos, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 50(4), pages 507-38.
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Citations

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Cited by:
  1. Schneider, Friedrich G., 2009. "Is a Federal European Constitution for an enlarged European Union necessary? Some preliminary suggestions using public choice analysis," Center for European, Governance and Economic Development Research Discussion Papers 83, University of Goettingen, Department of Economics.
  2. Bertrand Crettez & Bruno Deffains & Olivier Musy, 2013. "On the dynamics of legal convergence," Public Choice, Springer, vol. 156(1), pages 345-356, July.
  3. Schneider, Friedrich G., 2009. "Is a Federal European Constitution for an enlarged European Union necessary? Some preliminary suggestions using public choice analysis," Center for European, Governance and Economic Development Research Discussion Papers 83, University of Goettingen, Department of Economics.

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