University of Chicago Law Review


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Does supranational governance present a challenge to liberal constitutionalism? More particularly, has the European Union’s supranational form of governance fueled the rise of illiberal authoritarianism and undermined liberal constitutionalism? This Essay first addresses two related empirical questions associated with this larger query: first, whether the Brexit vote reflected a rise in authoritarianism and a turn against liberal constitutionalism; and second, whether the Euroscepticism to which the process of European integration has given rise has also contributed to the growth of the illiberal far right across the European Union and to the weakening of support for liberal constitutionalism. The third part addresses a broader and more conceptual question about the relationship between supranational governance and liberal constitutionalism—namely, whether there is something either inherent or contingent in the structure and process of European integration and in the project of European supranational governance that creates a challenge to liberal constitutionalism and, if so, what kind of challenge.

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