Council Checks of the Commission under the European Semester
(with Mark Hallerberg)
The European Commission recommends evaluations of the economic plans of member states. The Council then provides final text. Previous research suggests that the Council selectively edits the Commission’s recommendations. Both large member states and those with euroskeptic populations are likely to have the Council weaken what the Commission writes about them. We examine the determinants of the Council’s editing of these texts after the introduction of the European Semester in the period 2011-2018. We also account for different varieties of euroskepticism as the literature has become more differentiated than before. Using metrics of textual changes based on automated and hand-coding, we find little evidence of a systematic relationship between euroskepticism and textual editing. We do however find evidence that member state’s voting power and euro status matters. Our findings are suggestive in that any political channel that euroskepticism played in driving textual editing is no longer operating under the European Semester.