March 15, 2008
It is debated for years of the possibility to include a ‘one million voice’ democratic leverage in a Community Treaty.
It means that a petition signed by one million people have to be treated as a direct expression coming from Civil Society. With currently 450 millions inhabitants sharing different views, we can imagine to put the limit at 2 million voices to avoid non-democratic interference and results of propaganda.
If the petition is not liable for the institutions, it may be at least necessarily considered by the European Parliament.
As an indirect result and by the internal functioning of institutions, the Parliament could easily set up a direct incentive for Commission to provide a legislative text or at least to express its opinion (the usage have shown that the Commission always answers the EU Parliament to avoid a contesting – and a censure motion).
What could make this tool a reality? If it is not anymore possible to include it in the Lisbon Treaty as it was advocated first, the public opinion resistances (in France, in UK) and the government resistance (Poland) + Ireland referendum towards ratification process may be the good opportunity for all NGOs and Civil associations to enter the breach through a collective action and reclaim a recognition of such a principle.
In order of what they could offer to soften the ratification process for governments in avoiding resistance of their own members. They will show at the same time a real capacity of negotiation.