Fair reweighting of the votes in the EU Council of Ministers and the choice of majority requirement for qualified majority voting during successive enlargements
Leech, Dennis (2001) Fair reweighting of the votes in the EU Council of Ministers and the choice of majority requirement for qualified majority voting during successive enlargements. Working Paper. University of Warwick. Centre for the Study of Globalisation and Regionalisation, Coventry.
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This paper examines the system of Qualified Majority Voting, used by the Council of Ministers of the European Union, from the perspective of enlargement of the Union. It uses an approach based on power indices due to Penrose, Banzhaf and Coleman to make two analyses: (1) the question of the voting power of member countries from the point of view of fairness, and (2) the question of how the majority quota required for QMV should be determined. It studies two scenarios for change from 2005 onwards envisaged by the Nice Treaty: (1) no enlargement, the EU comprising 15 member countries, and (2) full enlargement to 27 members by the accession of all the present twelve candidates. The proposal is made that fair weights be determined algorithmically as a technical or routine matter as the membership changes. The analysis of how the quota affects power shows the trade-offs that countries face between their blocking power and the power of the Council to act. The main findings are: (1) that the weights laid down in the Nice Treaty are close to being fair, the only significant discrepancies being the under representation of Germany and Romania, and the over representation of Spain and Poland; (2) the majority quota required for a decision is set too high for the Council of Ministers to be an effective decision making body.
|Item Type:||Working or Discussion Paper (Working Paper)|
|Subjects:||J Political Science > JN Political institutions (Europe)|
|Divisions:||Faculty of Social Sciences > Economics
Faculty of Social Sciences > Centre for the Study of Globalisation and Regionalisation
|Library of Congress Subject Headings (LCSH):||Council of the European Union, Voting research -- European Union countries, Democracy -- European Union countries, Representative government and representation -- European Union countries|
|Series Name:||Working papers (University of Warwick. Centre for the Study of Globalisation and Regionalisation)|
|Publisher:||University of Warwick. Centre for the Study of Globalisation and Regionalisation|
|Place of Publication:||Coventry|
|Number of Pages:||31|
|Status:||Not Peer Reviewed|
|Access rights to Published version:||Open Access|
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