European Citizenship on the March

by Florent Guénard
In 2005, French and Dutch citizens unequivocally rejected the constitutional treaty that was to lay the foundation for a common political space in Europe. They were not alone in criticizing the institutions of the Union: political leaders quickly took the opportunity to question the role played by universal suffrage; the massive disinterest of European citizens was diagnosed; and bureaucrats bore the brunt of the massive attacks against political Europe as it functions today.
Yet, the very fact that such a political space already exists has been obfuscated by these accusations. There is more: as Étienne Pataut shows in his analysis of the role of the European Court of Justice, European citizenship has little by little been given firm legal foundations, and can now rely on a coherent body of recognized and guaranteed rights (The Invention of the European Citizen).
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