Challenging Habermas' response to the european union democratic deficit

Philosophy and Social Criticism 33 (6):736-755 (2007)
Abstract
rgen Habermas' response to the European Union democratic deficit calls for a minimal threshold of democratic legislation through an explicit constitutional founding. He defends a model of freedom as autonomous self-determination by proposing to tie basic rights in the EU to a univocal form of European-wide popular sovereignty. Instead of constructing a common European political identity, I appeal to the novel democratic potential of institutions in the EU such as the Open Method of Coordination for mediating overlapping sovereignties in accord with freedom as non-domination. The concluding example of basic rights to effective participation for immigrants and permanent minorities illustrates the strengths of Iris Young's and James Bohman's republican views of non-domination over Habermas' call for a European-wide collective willing. Key Words: James Bohman • democratic deficit • European Union • freedom • Jurgen Habermas • non-domination • Open Method of Coordination • republicanism • sovereignty • Iris Young.
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