I guess the upcoming football world championships will bring more people on the streets than people to the polls at the last EU elections. A stagnating low voter turnout of 43 per cent and the strong performance of Eurosceptic parties delivering them more than 20 per cent of the seats in the new European Parliament are the outcomes of the elections. Sadly, they did not really shock anybody. The subsequent squabbling between the Council and the EU Parliament over who endorses the next Commission President helps complementing the image of the EU as an elitist club of politicians who take decisions behind closed doors.

Yet there is hope: In the lead-up to the EU elections more than 1,400 candidates - from every EU Member State and every major party - pledged support for a new EU Convention on democratic reform. Almost 150 of these supporters were elected to the new European Parliament, forming a serious base of support for a new EU convention during the next legislative period.

This is the result of the EU Candidate Check conducted by our campaign team “Democratic Europe Now”. Actions by the newly elected EU deputies towards a democratic, transparent and open reform process of the EU now must follow. Their commitment and their deeds for a democratic European Union will hopefully convince all politicians in Brussels that continuing business as usual is NOT an option.

All the best,
Cora Pfafferott

ECI 'One of Us rejected'
On 28 May, the European Commission refused the European Citizens’ Initiative ‘One of Us’, which aimed at ending the financing of research that destruct human life before birth. Following the ECI ‘Water is a Human Right’, ‘One of Us’ is the second citizens’ initiative at EU level that had gathered the necessary support of more than one million signatures from at least seven EU Member States. The non-binding character of the European Citizens’ Initiative is a main point of criticism for Democracy International.
Denmark to join Unified Patent Court
On 25 May, along with the European elections, 62,5 per cent of Danish voters decided by referendum to join the Unified Patent Court.
17 May: Democratic Europe Day
Citizens and organisations from all over Europe took part in the Europe-wide action day for democracy on 17 May 2014, organised by our campaign team "Democratic Europe Now".
Secession Referendums in Ukraine a 'Farce'
Ukraine’s Constitution and international standards of the conduct of referendums prove that the labelling of a "farce" is appropriate.
Cool and calm: Direct democracy in Switzerland
Participating in a journey to Switzerland, we observed the citizens' assembly of Glarus making decisions directly.
Democracy International