Type: Contribution to book
Referendums on EU treaty reform : revisiting the result in second referendums
Julie SMITH (ed.), The Palgrave handbook of European referendums, London : Springer, 2021, pp. 563-581
LAFFAN, Brigid, Referendums on EU treaty reform : revisiting the result in second referendums, in Julie SMITH (ed.), The Palgrave handbook of European referendums, London : Springer, 2021, pp. 563-581 - https://hdl.handle.net/1814/70678
Retrieved from Cadmus, EUI Research Repository
Changes to the Irish Constitution require a referendum and all major new EU treaties have been put to a popular vote in Ireland. Eight times since the mid-1980s, the Irish electorate has engaged in an intense, albeit not always informed debate, on a European treaty. Twice Irish voters rejected an EU treaty and twice Irish governments, supported by the main opposition parties, went back to the electorate to ask ‘Is this your final answer?’. It is important to analyse the Irish case of revisiting the results of referendums to understand the dynamics involved. A number of clear conclusions may be drawn. First, the Irish government backed by the Oireachtas managed the process. Second, returning to the electorate will only work if there is a broad domestic consensus that it is legitimate to revisit the outcome. Third, the EU collectively and the other member states make concessions, short of reopening the treaty, to support a second referendum.
Cadmus permanent link: https://hdl.handle.net/1814/70678
Full-text via DOI: 10.1007/978-3-030-55803-1
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