Le paradoxe du Parlement européen

Que font au juste les députés du Parlement européen ? La grande majorité des quelques 375 millions d’électeurs appelés à voter lors des élections européennes du 4 au 7 juin n’en ont qu’une vague idée, ou aucune idée du tout, raison pour laquelle le taux de participation sera sans doute dramatiquement faible dans l’ensemble de l’Union européenne. Il y a trente ans, lors des premières élections parlementaires, près des deux tiers de l’électorat se sont rendus aux urnes, mais depuis lors le taux de participation a décliné régulièrement. Cette année, il risque de ne pas dépasser les 30 pour cent.

Les politiciens européens sont dans l’ensemble fiers de l’Union européenne et de la manière dont elle s’est agrandie et approfondie au fil du temps. Mais c’est aussi la complexité croissante de l’UE qui explique le désintérêt croissant des électeurs, et leur désaffection ne doit pas être prise à la légère.

Les élections européennes sont en elles-mêmes étranges et insatisfaisantes. Il n’y a pas de sujets concernant l’ensemble de l’UE pour ou contre lesquels les électeurs puissent voter, et comme la circonscription électorale de chaque député s’élève à plus d’un demi million de personnes, leur vote ne reflète pas non plus la popularité d’un politicien donné. De manière générale, ces élections représenteront sans doute plus un vote de protestation sur des questions nationales qu’autre chose.

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