The EU’s Rule of Law Agenda at a Crossroads.
The coronavirus is posing not only a risk to civilian health, but also a threat to the strength of democracies. Various non-governmental organizations and multilateral bodies have published warnings and guidelines on how to safeguard the rule of law and insulate societies from the risk of corruption exacerbated by the covid-19 crisis. The European Parliament (EP) and the European Commission (EC) have been at the heart of the debate about how to address democratic backsliding inside the European Union (EU). The EC included principles to address these issues in its economic recovery proposal and the EP has been pushing for rule of law conditionality regarding European funds. But whether these steps will be enough to create a new democratic consensus among European and transatlantic partners alike remains to be seen.
CEPA hosted a discussion to consider: how can the EU continue driving rule of law reforms in member states as well as in states aspiring to join the Union, and how can the U.S. and the EU develop a common rule of law agenda as part of rebuilding transatlantic cohesion?