When people said back in 2009 that there wouldn’t be another treaty revision for a generation, they didn’t realise how true it was.
Here we are in the year 2039, and the EU is still operating according to the Lisbon Treaty.
Sure, the Union has expanded to 37 countries, and a few areas have seen power moved from the states to the EU, in particular the environment, but it is still the same old treaty.
This has been such a change from the period from 1988 to 2009, when the EU treaties were revised again and again.
However, it became clear when France and the Netherlands rejected the Constitution and Ireland later rejected Lisbon that it was becoming too hard to agree on any meaningful changes.
However, the defining moment was on the 4th of November 2009, when the leader of the British Conservative Party, David Cameron, announced a new policy that ensured that all future Treaty revisions would be decided by a referendum in the UK, virtually guaranteeing that they would be defeated.
At the same time, he pledged that the Tories wanted to remain in the EU, working positively to advance their national interest, so any hope that other countries might have had the the UK would leave the EU were finally laid to rest.
It was attempted, of course, to make a major revision in 2024, but the Belgrad Treaty was soundly defeated in the British referendum.
It is therefore no wonder that twelve continental European countries today announced that they would enter into a new union, the European Federation (EF), completely pooling their defense and foreign policies.
The EF will probably become a member of the EU instead of the individual countries, so the EU will become completely dominated by the EF in a few years’ time.
It is expected that most EU members will join the EF in due course. The Twelve have said that all EU members are welcome to join the EF, provided that they sign up to the full package, including the Euro, Schengen, etc.
The EF actually doesn’t differ radically from the EU in scope at the moment. The main difference is that the EF Constitution can be changed if 2/3 of the member states agree and it is agreed in a European referendum (not on a national basis), so it is expected to change a lot over the next decades.
Although many Europeans are still nostalgic for the old nation states, the rapid rise of China and other non-democratic countries has made it necessary to create a single, strong European power to preserve our values.
Update (8/10): Rob asked for a map: