Fixing the Refugee Crisis: Holding the Commission Accountable

In that 2015 State of the Union address, Juncker famously asserted that his Commission would be ‘very political’. ‘Political’ in Juncker’s words, meant facing up to challenges, not just ‘business as usual’. Rather, it was ‘time to speak frankly about the issues facing the European Union.’ In spite of this apparent rhetorical and institutional commitment, our central argument is that the Commission’s weakness during the refugee crisis meant it underperformed not only when measured against the aim of being more ‘political’ (in particular if this means correctly identifying and dealing with the sources of real political problems), but even if we envisage for it a more modest technocratic role.

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Trade, Security and Defence: Holding Cecilia Malmström and Federica Mogherini Accountable

The shift away from a technocratic, apolitical European Commission towards a politicized one is a momentous development of the European Union. In the Common Commercial Policy and the Common Foreign and Security Policy, the EU has constitutionalized and institutionalized different degrees of accountability mechanisms in this special domain of foreign affairs

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Barnier, Bureaucracy and Brexit – a Test for Juncker’s ‘Political’ Commission

At first sight, it may neither be easy nor obvious to assimilate the conduct of the Brexit negotiations to the idea of a ‘political Commission’. A closer look, however, reveals that Juncker’s personnel and organisational choices regarding the Brexit negotiations fit that pattern more readily.

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False Accountability, Elusive Rule of Law

The tale of the ‘political Commission’ is not only bound to weaken the Union’s ability to meet the outstanding challenges touching upon its institutional core but has fundamentally undermined the EU’s action in an area of most fundamental concern: the unfulfilled promise of democracy and the rule of law for all European citizens.

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Evaluating Juncker’s Political Commission: The Right Idea in the Wrong Hands?

The idea of a political European Commission may be the defining idea of the Juncker Presidency. It was the idea that gave Mr. Juncker the Presidency in the first place. As he stated in 2015, he wanted a 'very political Commission'. This ambition raises many questions, particularly: What does the political Commission mean? Did it work and should it be repeated?

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