Bavarian defence of the <i>Heimat</i> in Europe

Eve Hepburn

in Using Europe: Territorial Party Strategies in a Multi-level System

Published by Manchester University Press

Published in print July 2010 | ISBN: 9780719081385
Published online July 2012 | e-ISBN: 9781781703236 | DOI:
Bavarian defence of the Heimat in Europe

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This chapter shows that, whilst all parties are unquestionably pro-European, this masks a growth of scepticism about what Europe can do for Bavarians, and where its limits should be drawn. Demands for a ‘Europe of the Regions’ were motivated by the fear that European integration was encroaching on Länder competences. In response, the Christian Social Union proposed that regional rights must be protected in Europe, and used this argument to lobby for a Committee of the Regions. However, the weakness of this body, and the expansion of European competences into ever-wider areas, forced the CSU to adopt a different strategy: to protect the ‘hard shell’ of the member state, which also meant protecting the Länder. Meanwhile, opposition parties sought to counter the CSU's strategy by arguing that a regionalised Europe should mean strengthening the local level against Bavarian state centralisation.

Keywords: Bavarians; European integration; Christian Social Union; Länder; regionalised Europe; state centralisation

Chapter.  18193 words.  Illustrated.

Subjects: European Union

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