"The European Parliament (EP), formerly called Common Assembly, was originally a mere consultative body. Its powers, however, have been substantially increased over the years with successive changes to the treaties. While the right of legislative initiative remains with the European Commission, the Lisbon Treaty has placed the EP on an equal footing with the Council of Ministers in deciding on the vast majority of EU laws."
"The two co-legislators - the EP and the Council of Ministers - adopt legislation jointly, having equal rights and obligations. The procedure consists of up to three readings with the possibility of the two co-legislators to conclude at any reading if they succeed to reach an overall agreement on a joint text. During the first reading, the EP can reject the Commission's proposals as a whole; approve it without amendments; or approve it subject to amendments. The text of the proposal as approved by the EP is then forwarded to the Council and the Commission as the EP's position. In turn, the Council can: accept the EP's position, in which case the legislative act is adopted; or adopt changes to the EP's position, leading to a Council's first reading position, which is sent to the EP for a second reading. Just a glimpse at the procedure shows how utterly inaccurate is Mr Colman's claim that the EP cannot change legislation."
Labels: Trevor Colman