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    British brinkmanship and Gaelic games: EU treaty ratification in the UK and Ireland from a two level game perspective

    Hodson, Dermot and Maher, I. (2013) British brinkmanship and Gaelic games: EU treaty ratification in the UK and Ireland from a two level game perspective. The British Journal of Politics & International Relations , ISSN 1467-856X.

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    Abstract

    Viewed from the theory of two-level games, the European Union (EU) Act (2011) is a rare example of a government tying its hands in international diplomacy. The UK government could find its hands more tightly bound than anticipated under the EU Act, inter alia, due to the enhanced role of the courts in EU treaty ratification. The EU Act could convey bargaining advantages to the UK, but it could also encourage other EU member states to walk away from the negotiating table. The risks posed by tighter ratification rules are borne out by Ireland's experience of EU treaty ratification since the Supreme Court ruling Crotty v. An Taoiseach (1987). David Cameron's ‘veto’ of plans for a new EU treaty in December 2011 illustrates the difficulties of knowing ex ante when a referendum is required under the EU Act. The European Union (EU) Act (2011) provides for greater parliamentary oversight and the possibility of a referendum before EU treaties can be ratified. This article explores the EU Act from a two-level game perspective, seeing it as a rare example of a government tying its hands in international diplomacy. That the UK government could find its hands more tightly bound than anticipated is suggested by Ireland's turbulent experience of treaty ratification in the light of Crotty v. An Taoiseach (1987), a landmark ruling by the Irish Supreme Court and an inspiration for the EU Act. This situation could, the theory of two-level games predicts, bolster the UK's bargaining position in Brussels, but it could also damage the country's credibility and encourage other member states to walk away from the negotiating table. This last point helps to shed some light on the UK's ‘veto’ of the Fiscal Compact in December 2011.

    Metadata

    Item Type: Article
    Keyword(s) / Subject(s): ratification, two-level game, tying hands, Crotty, EU act, fiscal compact
    School: Birkbeck Schools and Departments > School of Social Sciences, History and Philosophy > Politics
    Research Centre: British Politics and Public Life, Centre for the Study of
    Depositing User: Sarah Hall
    Date Deposited: 28 Oct 2013 11:19
    Last Modified: 07 Dec 2016 15:23
    URI: http://eprints.bbk.ac.uk/id/eprint/8606

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