Conference Contribution Details
Mandatory Fields
Costello, R
Netherlands Institute of Governance Annual Workshop
Partisan composition and bicameral relations in EU legislative politics
Optional Fields
                           This paper provides a reassessment of relations between the two legislative chambers in the EU, the European Parliament and the Council of Ministers.  Policy differences between these chambers are of considerable interest, as under the codecision procedure (which is expected to become the main legislative procedure in the near future) they are jointly responsible for decisions.  It is argued here that competition between the chambers cannot be understood in terms of their partisan composition.  The question of the appropriate level of government (EU or national) is always present in legislative negotiations, and this generates persistent institutional divisions. The political composition of each chamber only affects the extent of conflict between them, not the nature of this conflict. This account of inter-institutional politics is evaluated using data on the positions taken by legislative actors on proposals negotiated between 1999 and 2005. In doing so, evidence is brought to bear on a question that has received little empirical attention to date.