Political Identity and Fundamental Rights Protection in the European Union
Edited By Gabriele de Angelis and Paulo Barcelos
Section IV: Expectations and Reality
219 Section IV Expectations and Reality The Charter of Fundamental Rights After Its First Decade: Legal Impact and Political Consequences A Conversation with MIGUEL POIARES MADURO1 Prof. Maduro, over the past ten years you have repeatedly dealt with the Charter of Fundamental Rights of the European Union (CFR) both in your scholarly work and as Advocate General at the European Court of Justice (ECJ). Your initial view was that the Charter was shred in a peculiar ambiguity: it could be seen either as an instrument to guarantee that the powers of the Union conform to the fundamental rights of member states, or it could be seen as a first and decisive step towards a genuine component of a true constitutional project. In the first case, the Charter would impose a limitation on the legislative acts of European institutions, whereas in the latter it would mainly work as an instrument of further political integration of a federalist type. The one does not rule out the other, but from a political point of view the two options reflect the well-documented, contradictory intentions and political wills that stood behind the adoption of the Charter. How do you assess this alternative ten years after its drafting? In my view we have not witnessed a resolution of that ambiguity. If anything, such an ambiguity has grown. The Charter has nei- 1 Miguel Poiares Maduro is Professor at the Department of European Law and Director of the Global Governance Programme of the Robert Schuman Centre for...
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