A Quiet Revolution - the European Court of Justice and Its Interlocutors
Title: A Quiet Revolution - the European Court of Justice and Its Interlocutors
Author: WEILER, Joseph H. H.
Citation: Comparative Political Studies, 1994, 26, 4, 510-534
Although the governments of the member states of the European Community (EC) have always had a principal role in fashioning EC policies and norms, from the 1960s through the 1980s the European Court of Justice played a key role in imposing a compliance regime with these norms that has resembled in its structure and rigor the constitutional order of a federal state. To an extent unprecedented in other international organizations, states have found themselves locked into this regime and unable to enjoy the more common international legal compliance latitude. Interestingly, member state courts, legislatures, and governments seemed, by and large, to accept the new constitutional regime ''imposed'' by the European Court with a large measure of equanimity-a veritable ''quiet revolution.'' In this essay, the author restates the principal features of the new order and then explores the possible reasons that explain the acceptance and endorsements of the European Court by major constituencies in the member states. In the conclusion, the author hints at factors that bode a much rougher future relationship between the European Court and its national interlocutors.
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