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The Šimečka Report: Launching an EU Mechanism on Democracy, the Rule of Law and Fundamental Rights

Simecka report lecture photo_Dec 9
Wednesday, December 9, 2020, 1:30 pm – 3:00 pm

Reflections and outlooks by the report's rapporteur MEP Michal Šimečka


European Union's increasing pre-occupation with the rule of law is a belated response to the crisis of liberal democratic values in the Union. Recent efforts to tame illiberalism saw the European Commission begin monitoring the rule of law in the Member States and a new proposal of the European Parliament to create an interinstitutional mechanism for the protection of all common values. At the same time, enforcement of key elements of the rule of law, notably judicial independence, remains a major challenge which the EU promises to rise to with an instrument conditioning the upcoming Multiannual Financial Framework and Recovery Fund. Faced with an unprecedented budget veto from Hungary and Poland, the EU stands at a constitutional crossroad. Will it give credibility to its image as a guarantor of democratic values in Europe by putting money where its mouth is or will it again kick the illiberal can down the road?

SPP Dean Martin Kahanec hosts the report's rapporteur to discuss these issues at CEU's School of Public Policy. 


13:30-13:35 Welcome by SPP Dean Martin Kahanec

13:35-14:30 Lecture by Michal Šimečka, MEP

14:30-15:00 Discussion


Michal Šimečka Biography

Michal Šimečka is a Member of the European Parliament (Renew Europe Group) and Vice-Chair of Progressive Slovakia. As member of the Civil Liberties (LIBE) and Foreign Affairs (AFET) committees, Michal is also the Parliament's Rapporteur for the Democracy, Rule of Law and Fundamental Rights Pact. Previosly Michal was a Senior Researcher at the Institute of International Relations in Prague, where he dealt with European integration and European security, and served as adviser to the Minister of Foreign Affairs of the Czech Republic. He holds a D.Phil (PhD) in political science and international relations from the University of Oxford.