Three hundred seventy-five million people from the Arctic to the edges of Africa will go to the polls next week to elect 785 new Members of Parliament for the European Union. Here is a rundown of the issues this election season.
We'll devote real estate in the BT blog to explore each issue in depth this week and next.
Immigration With Africa but a canoe trip across the Mediterranean and the Euro forecasted to remain strong over the long-term, the E.U. is the destination of choice for many migrants. How do different member states feel about the influx?
Legislation What is the Lisbon Treaty and what does it mean for Europe's future?
The Rule of Law The CIA rankled a whole lot of feathers when they parked and interrogated terrorist suspects on European soil. Will American covert op's be banished forever?
Labor and the Economy The E.U. has already capped the work week at a maximum of 48 hours in addition to granting a host of benefits unheard of outside the Union. Will this allow the E.U. to emerge from recession?
Common Currency Has the Euro delivered on its promise of a solidifying the common market ten years after its introduction? Is the world's tenth largest largest free trade zone really free?
The Far Right Europe's continued globalization has spurred social conservatives to form coalitions similar to the far right in the U.S. What will be the impact of groups like Austria's Freedom Party on the elections?
Unity What happened to this whole "United States of Europe" thing? Can a supranational vision be achieved over 27 different countries, each with its own national politics? Our discussion of election issues is by no means complete without thinkers' input, so don't hesitate to comment here or on our Facebook page!
Further Reading and Viewing:
The official election guide from EU Parliament in Brussels
Euronews' overview of the campaigns
Pose questions by video directly to Parliament at Questions for Europe