Euroskepticism arrives: the missing debate

João Carlos Espada*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalComment/debate

1 Citation (Scopus)


Looking at the worrying rise of Euroskeptic and some extremist parties in the European Parliament elections of May 2014, this article recalls Ralf Dahrendorf’s distinction between constitutional and normal politics, noting also his reliance on Karl Popper. It then argues that the EU should deconstitutionalize the issue of central versus local power by abandoning the dogma of “more Europe” and making it possible to advocate fewer powers for Brussels without thereby having to become anti-EU. Mainstream parties in Europe must be willing to host views that favor decentralization. Britain’s desire for a renegotiation of its status within the EU should be treated as an opportunity to put greater flexibility into EU political life. Germany should be the first country to grasp and carry forward this opportunity.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)88-95
Number of pages8
JournalJournal of Democracy
Issue number4
Publication statusPublished - 1 Oct 2014


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