It might seem counter-intuitive to suggest that the chasm between Europe and her citizens is partially caused by the weakening of constituent power at the national level. Nonetheless, this article contends that the strength of ever closer union depends partly on the resilience of national constituent power. An insight recovered from French constitutional theory – that respect for constituent power is closely related to respect for limits on the power of amendment – is used as a measure of this resilience. Upon examination of judicial decisions in Germany and Spain in which enumerated substantive limits on the power of amendment have not been satisfactorily enforced, and others in Ireland and France in which the existence of essential limits on the power of amendment has been flatly denied, this article concludes that by debilitating national constituent power, ironically treaty ratifications conduce to ever closer remoteness between the peoples of Europe.
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