Of European citizenship and other shenanigan

Remarks on European Union Citizens’ Participation to the French Municipal Elections in March 2001 The Maastricht Treaty created European citizenship, which notably included the right to vote and be elected in the local and European elections in the Member State of residence. One would hope that it would help Europe lessen its democratic deficiency, which had been proved by surveys and the meager results of the elections for the European Parliament. The European citizens’ participation rate at the French municipal elections in March 2001 does not seem to be a reason for rejoicing. On a population of about 1,200,000 residents in France, only 166,000 have enlisted themselves to vote and less than 1,000 have been candidates, against about 256,000 French candidates. An analysis based on quality shows that only those Europeans who are most integrated in municipal life participate, and more those in small towns than those in large cities do. The interdiction of being a mayor or a deputy partly explains this deficient participation, but Europe still remains this Unidentified Political Object discussed by Jacques Delors. – Summary AFRI-2002