C. Bastasin - The lack of political integration in European governance: The case of the conflict between security in Europe and democracy in Poland

Strengthening political integration is tacitly coming of age in Europe after the pandemic crisis led the European Union to intensify solidarity within its borders. Mutual debt, transfers without attached conditionality, and other innovations have taken European cooperation to a higher level in the last two years.

However, while the EU has been lending or granting money without conditionality to countries most affected by Covid-19, it is also considering withdrawing EU money and imposing sanctions on Poland if the country does not respect the rule of law. Political integration, based on common democratic principles, is becoming a factor for the future of European economic governance. A more open commitment to political integration in the EU may soon become inescapable.

In this short brief (an earlier version was published by The Brookings Institution), we will present the case of the conflict between security in Europe and democracy in Poland as a test case for what might happen as interdependency in Europe – driven by economic integration - proceeds. Recent developments in Poland show how difficult it can be to tacitly hold together democracy and security, two of the existential goals that have shaped the European Union.

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