“The Commission must be big on the big things, and act only where it can achieve better results than Member States acting alone”. So said President Juncker at the beginning of his Commission’s term in 2014. While agreeing with this approach, I believe that as of today, it has not happened. If there were attempts in that direction, they were insufficient to correct the weaknesses of the Union. On big things like addressing the migration crisis, social cohesion, economic and social imbalances, the Union was not decisive in the last 5 years. Most targets set in the Europe-2020-Strategy remain only on paper. We were told that “more Europe” is the solution. This has increased citizens’ expectations. One year before the European elections, citizens still find themselves distant from what happens in Brussels. In a world where globalisation is valued, perhaps, only for economic purposes, citizens are not finding their request for better representation in the European institutions, but in national political fora. Which is why populism in many EU countries has progressed so much. It will not be countered by establishing new layers of institutions or policies. What we should work for is a genuine, shared political consolidation of a few key priorities.
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