At the meeting of the European Council on 16/17 June 2005, Heads of State or Government agreed to come back to the issue of the ratification of the Constitutional Treaty in the first half of 2006 in order to make an overall assessment of the national debates launched as part of the period of reflection and to agree on how to proceed.
Following the French and Dutch ‘no’ votes on the European Constitution, the Heads of State or Government call for a ‘period of reflection’ to enable a broad debate to take place in each Member State. On 13 October 2005, the European Commission launches its ‘Plan D’ (Democracy, Dialogue and Debate), demonstrating the key role it intends to play in these debates. The aim of Plan D is to establish a common framework for the 25 national debates by proposing various models and structures to the Member State governments and suggesting common procedures and major topics for discussion.
In its resolution of 24 November 2006, the European Parliament emphasises the importance of using the period of reflection to revive the constitutional project on the basis of a broad public debate about the future of European integration. It also proposes that ‘parliamentary forums’ be held to stimulate the debate and shape the political conclusions required to resolve the crisis facing the EU.
In his editorial dated 21 January 2006, as the European Parliament begins a period of reflection on the future of the Constitutional Treaty, Ferdinando Riccardi, leader writer for Europe Daily Bulletin, comments on the differences of opinion among MEPs, as a result of which all options are being left open, from keeping the text as it stands to amending it or rejecting it completely.
The European Council of 15 and 16 June 2006 adopts an overall policy on transparency which concerns, in particular, the work of the Council of the European Union. According to this document, all Council deliberations on legislative acts to be adopted by codecision shall be open to the public as shall the votes and the explanation of votes by Council Members; Council deliberations on legislative acts other than those adopted by codecision may likewise be open to the public (see Annex I). The European Council requests the Council to take the measures necessary to ensure implementation of this new policy.
Au lendemain du Conseil européen des 15 et 16 juin 2006, le Bulletin Quotidien Europe expose les décisions prises, par les chefs d'État ou de gouvernement de l'Union européenne, sur l'avenir du traité constitutionnel.
Table showing the ratification procedures — by means of a parliamentary decision or a referendum — in the 25 Member States of the European Union that are necessary for the entry into force of the Constitutional Treaty signed in Rome on 29 October 2004 (situation as at 5 December 2006).
In this interview, Alain Lamassoure, French Minister for European Affairs from 1993 to 1995, Member of the European Parliament from 1989 to 1993 and since 1999, and Member of the Convention on the Future of Europe from 2002 to 2003, discusses the political consequences of the results of the referendums held on 29 May in France and on 1 June in the Netherlands for the ratification of the Treaty establishing a Constitution for Europe. He also refers to the current crisis associated with the Irish ‘No’ vote on the Treaty of Lisbon.