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12 Eur. J.L. Reform 373 (2010)
Karlsruhe v. Lisbon: An Overture to a Constitutional Dialogue from an Estonian Perspective

handle is hein.journals/ejlr12 and id is 373 raw text is: Karlsruhe v. Lisbon

An Overture to a Constitutional Dialogue from an Estonian
Tanel Kerikmae & Katrin Nyman-Metcalf
The article uses the 2009 decision of the German Constitutional Court on the Lis-
bon Treaty as a basis for an analysis of the relationship between EU law and Mem-
ber State law, especially Member State constitutions. The authors argue that an
uncritical openness of Member States to supremacy of EU law and the interpreta-
tions made of it by the European Court of Justice is not necessary but rather an
analytical attitude towards the development of EU with active legal argumentation
to protect the rule of law - a deliberative supranationalism. A constitutional dia-
logue between Member States and the EU is the best protection and promoter of
rule of law. The constitutional discussions in Estonia are used as an illustration of
the balancing of national constitutional principles and supremacy or EU law.
Keywords: constitutional dialogue, Karlsruhe decision, supranationalism.
A. Deliberative Supranationalism
The relationship between European Union (EU) law and Member State law is the
central and most problematic issue of the EU integration process.' In this article,
this issue is presented primarily against the background of the Estonian situa-
tion, as an example of the discussion of the issue in a recent EU Member State.
The discussion, however, is of general interest and not just relevant for Estonia.
Estonian openness to EU law principles and norms has been indeed at issue,2 but
mainly from an apologetic point of view. At the time of Estonian accession to the
EU, when the Constitution of the Republic of Estonia Amendment Act was
1   F. C. Mayer, Supremacy - Lost? Comment on Roman Kwiecief, - The Unity of the European Constitu-
tion, Berlin, Heidelberg, New York: Springer, at 87, (2006).
2   See C. Ginter, Application of Principles of European Law in the Supreme Court of Estonia, Disserta-
tiones luridicae Universitatis Tartuensis 21, Tartu University Press (2008).

European Journal of Law Reform 2010 (12) 3-4


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