European security and defence policy has long been an elusive domain for parliaments. However, two recent developments invite a reassessment of this situation. On the one hand, since 2016, the Common Security and Defence Policy (CSDP) has taken on a qualitative step towards further integration. On the other, security and defence issues are becoming more politicized, as shown by the growing polarization of vote at the European Parliament. Studies of parliamentarization have considered both processes (integration and politicization) to be positively correlated with an increase of parliamentary involvement. However, this paper argues that the democracy-enhancing effect of integration and politicization is not straightforward, but depends on the degree and character of these two processes. This point is illustrated by the evolution of supranational parliamentary scrutiny of CSDP, where contrary to the expectations, the recent boost in integration and greater politicization have translated in a relative decline of ‘parliamentary capital’.
- Common security and defence policy
- parliamentary capital
- European parliament
- NATIONAL PARLIAMENTS