The European Citizen‘s Initiative (ECI) is a PR relations stunt by the EU Commission and the EU parliament to desperately try to reach out and reconnect with there disillusioned citizens. Barroso, Van Rompuy, and Ashton are well aware of the so called ‘democrat deficit’ is a real concern, and problem for the EU elite to address.
Buzz words like “participatory democracy” are not fooling any one. Collecting 1 million signatures from at least 7 EU countries within 1 year (online or offline) will be no easy feat, and then to be presented for EU ‘consideration’. Who will really take on such a marathon task? who as the time and money, apart from professional lobbyists?
“The main criticism seems to be always the same, and it can be summed up in by stating that the “observers” consider the tool weighed down by too many procedural constraints to make the ECI really effective for the “simple” citizens, while affirming without a shade of doubt that the “Citizens’ Initiative” makes for a great tool in the hands of lobbyists”
I feel that the EU is desperately trying to reach out to the citizens of Europe, but there are far too many fences to jump. Collecting 1 million signatures is a mammoth task by anyone standards, and even if collected will only progress to ‘consideration and scrutiny’ by the EU; may never actually be fully accepted? I feel the EU Commission as shot itself in the foot as in reality the only people with the time, resources, and money will be the Brussels professional lobbyists who know how the complex EU institutions work and function. Sadly I think this ECI project will be a massive flop for the EU as a whole, only to re-enforce the citizens feeling of isolation and detachment from the Commission and there MEPs in the European parliament.
For further info on this matter read – http://www.neurope.eu/blog/1-million-people-lobby