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SPP 516

Author: Richard Rose and Gabriela Borz
Description: This paper shows the theoretical and empirical importance of distinguishing between static support for the EU as it now is and dynamic support for further integration. Although most Europeans endorse the EU as a good thing today, the European Election Study finds no popular majority for an ever closer union, the commitment of EU institutions. The largest group is satisfied with the EU as it is. Contrary to claims that they are incompetent to evaluate the EU, statistical analysis finds those satisfied are just as educated, middle-class and engaged with EU affairs as those wanting more integration, but they differ in evaluating the performance of the EU and their national government and in their identities. The fourfold distribution of public opinion is thus in conflict with the economic and political measures EU institutions are taking toward an ever closer union.

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