The European parliament and the evolution of its legislative power and the eu law-making system

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© 2015, Centro Estudios Politicos Constitucionales. All rights reserved. The purpose of this article is to present the evolution of the role of the European Parliament in the legislative power of the European Union and its impact on the whole system of EU law-making acts. This presentation is structured according to legal criteria and discussed from a legal point of view. There is information on the context of general international law and on relevant Political Science studies; regarding bib liography, special attention has been paid to insiders publications. The first part of the article focuses on the Parliament’s role in past and present legislative procedures, where it has produced either preparatory acts (as in the consultation, conciliation, cooperation and assent/consent procedures) or legislative acts in the framework of the co-decision procedure (the so-called «ordinary legislative procedure») or, in rare cases, out of special legislative procedures. The second part throws light on the consequences of the growing role of the European Parliament as a legislator, on the legitimacy and the quality of European legislation (with references to the relevant interinstitutional acts) and on the parliamentary scrutiny of acts of the executive based on Articles 290 and 291 TFEU, acts for the implementation of the new legislation for economic governance, and acts of European agencies, bodies or offices. In the conclusions some general comments are submitted as regards the development of the European Parliament prerogatives concerning legislation, and also on the development of negotiations with the Council in legislative procedures, imposing limits on the backbenchers participation in the legislative process and on access of the public to information about the preparatory work of legislative acts. Last, there is a reflection on resistence and nostalgies in the presence of the new provisions of the Lisbon Treaty, inconsistent with the fact that they were drafted with a very substantial representation of MPs from Member States, and about the reaction that could be expected from the European Parliament.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)43-83
JournalRevista de Derecho Comunitario Europeo
Issue number50
Publication statusPublished - 1 Jan 2015


  • Agencies
  • Assent
  • Co-decision
  • Codification
  • Conciliation
  • Consent
  • Consultation procedure
  • Cooperation procedure
  • Delegated acts
  • Good practice
  • Implementing acts
  • Interinstitutional acts
  • Legislative acts
  • Legitimacy of European legislation
  • Ordinary legislative procedure
  • Quality of legislation
  • Recasting
  • Reconsultation
  • Regulatory acts
  • Self-organization of European Institutions
  • Special legislative procedures
  • Trialogues


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