The upper house of the German parliament, the Bundesrat, has approved changes to Germany’s constitution that clear the way for the country’s adoption of the Lisbon treaty.
The modification follows the adoption of the package by the lower house 10 days ago, and the constitutional court ruling in Karlsruhe that made the process necessary. Now just the president’s signature is needed on the treaty to make it law. Germany is one of only four EU members still to ratify Lisbon along with Ireland, which holds its treaty referendum in early October, the Czech Republic and Poland. For the second time, the Irish electorate is being asked to give the green light to a treaty that is designed, among other things, to make the EU’s decision-making processes easier. But the Irish rejection of the treaty last year on top of the Netherlands and France’s earlier rejection of the draft constitution prompted a series of treaty modifications and local opt-outs to calm Irish fears about a loss of independence or their EU Commissioner.