Juncker to EU Member States: We Don’t Need Your Consent!

According to Jean-Claude Juncker, the President of the Politburo European Commission, EU apparatchiks neither want nor need the approval of member states when concluding trade deals.

Many thanks to JLH for translating this article from Der Tagesspiegel. The translator includes this note:

The tension between the system and its members appears in this business-as-usual glimpse into who does what in the EU. Again, I am reminded of the old Brit comedy series Yes, Minister, chronicling the clash of bureaucrat and politician.

The translated article:

TTIP Model at EU Summit:

Merkel Pressures Juncker in the CETA Decision

The free trade agreement with Canada (CETA) will not be decided by the national parliaments when it comes to the EU Commission. Jean-Claude Juncker shared this information at the Brussels summit meeting.

June 28, 2016

Photo caption: Angela Merkel, Tuesday evening at the summit in Brussels

Are there calls from all sides for more democracy and transparency after the British departure? Hardly. This looks more like fear. Fear, not only of their own citizens, but now apparently of the national parliaments which could bring about the downfall of the agreement.
— comment in spreeathen[1]

Shortly after the Brexit referendum, the EU Commission took an extremely controversial decision. The will of Brussels authorities is that the parliaments of the European states are to have no part in the decision about the negotiated free trade agreement with Canada. Jean-Claude Juncker, EU Commission chair, shared this information at the 28-state Brussels summit, as the Deutsche Presse Agency (dpa) learned.

Chancellor Angela Merkel, however, intends to draw the Bundestag into the European-Canadian deliberations on CETA. “We will ask the Bundestag for its opinion,” she said Tuesday evening in Brussels. There were good reasons for the national parliaments to be involved [she said], the Commission had just given its legal opinion first. That was no reason to “pillory them.”

Juncker admitted that the national parliaments must also be drawn into the evaluation. A majority of member nations were of this opinion. As to the TTIP free trade agreement with the USA, no one had objections to the Commission continuing negotiations with Washington. Merkel also said there was a clear brief for further negotiations. The British decision for Brexit changed nothing.

Several EU states, including Germany, had spoken out against classifying CETA as a pure EU agreement and treating it according to the normal EU legislative procedures. This would lead to the EU parliament’s participation in the ratification, and national parliaments like the Bundestag would not be able to vote on it.

Because of a critical public, this participation was considered in Berlin to be indispensable. In Brussels, however, there had long been the concern that parliaments of individual states could block the development of European trade policy and thus make Europe inept in trade. In normal EU legislative procedure, the member states in the European council and the European parliament vote on the suggestions of the Commission.

The EU States Can Still Resist

The notion that only national parliaments grant democratic control weakens the basic idea of the EU, said Juncker. In the case of CETA, [he believes] this the best trade agreement that Europe has ever concluded.

So the future of the already negotiated agreement is open. The EU states could decide unanimously that they will not follow the Commission’s opinion. It is conceivable that execution of the agreement could be blocked indefinitely.

CETA is considered a blueprint for the huge TTIP agreement with the USA. Both agreements should provide for more growth in trade with North America. People and groups protective of the environment and consumers fear a decline in standards.


1.   Spree-Athen = “Athens on the Spree” is a longstanding nickname for Berlin. There are a few correspondingly named online sites, but I cannot identify the specific one.

14 thoughts on “Juncker to EU Member States: We Don’t Need Your Consent!

  1. This is interesting, because just after the Brexit vote it was being noised about that Britain would have to negotiate and obtain the agreement of each and every EU state in order to get a trade deal up.

    • There’s nothing wrong with bilateral agreements. That’s what Trump is advocating, as opposed to the NAFTA or TPP mega-bureaucracies. It’s a bit more complex but has the benefit of not having to compromise your freedom or your economic interests.

      Britain is one of the largest economies in the world. The European countries need it as much as it needs them..probably more.

      Even I was surprised (pleasantly) at the way stocks shot up 2 days after the Brexit vote. I was reconciled to poorer existence in exchange for more freedom in the world…but, it didn’t work that way. The more freedom, the more economic benefits.

  2. Do you want more bits of information or fewer? …in your policy?

  3. “The free trade agreement with Canada (CETA) will not be decided by the national parliaments when it comes to the EU Commission. Jean-Claude Juncker … ”

    Not surprising. And neither will secret TTIP be decided by the ordinary European voter through their elected MEPs .

    And Parliament president Martin Schultz sums up Europe’s “free”society: “It is not the EU philosophy that the crowd can decide its fate.” I lost count of the number of times this man presiding over parliament has claimed the Brussels EU is a democracy.

    Meanwhile, the latest wave of migrants are now coming from deep Africa, mostly men. And sixty million waiting with packed suit cases to head for Europe.

    • In a democracy it is the “crowd” or more accurately the electorate that decides the political path of the nation.
      African countries were given their independence in the 60’s and have held out the proverbial begging bowl ever since!
      Having royally screwed up their own countries they have decided to come to Europe, under the guise of Merkel’s “everyone is welcome” open invitation, with absolutely nothing positive to offer.
      She, Juncker, Sutherland, Timmermans, Schultz and others of their ilk should be in chains and not still free to pontificate about adversity etc. Ship them off to Africa and tell them their societies are too black, or China to tell them their societies are to yellow, or the middle East to tell them their societies are to brown and let us know the results when they come back!
      Oh that’s wrong of course because they wouldn’t SURVIVE.
      Bring the odious Soros to heel too, being a decrepit multi billionaire does not entitle you to interfere with a continent’s heritage and future.

  4. I’m not sure I get the problem here.
    AT ALL.

    A simple quick ‘n dirty “status-quo anti-Brexit” agreement would fix all economic issues. Anything more is just smoke and mirrors.

  5. Anybody ever wonder what the protection would be if some criminals got control over the eu? And they want an army? I think the eu member states need a 2nd amendment.

  6. “We don’t need your consent!” The insane arrogance of Juncker surely indicates the man is not ‘normal.’

    • On the contrary, Juncker is quite normal.

      He is merely following the atmosphere of totalitarian logic that suffuses the Fascist state the EU has become.

      Only one politician in 100 has the integrity and principle to resist the siren call of personal diktat.

      It’s quite the lesson in political evolution to watch as the parliaments of the individual EU states step-by-step are reduced to powerless debating societies. The same evolutionary migration into irrelevance happened to the Roman Senate when power was centralized into the dictators.

      The logic is that the EU will either fall now, or else gradually transform itself into a true tyranny complete with political prisoners, and then fall later.

  7. Eeerrmmm actually Juncker, you stuid fornicate, yes you do. Because nothingnstops a member state telling you to FOAD, and ignoring you…

    Got gun?

    Go Bulgaria!

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