Democratic Implications of the Treaty of Lisbon
Empirically, a comparison of co-decision procedures during
the 5th (1999-2004), 6th (2004-2009), and 7th (2009-2014)
legislatures reveals that the more frequently applied, and the more
evolved the co-decision procedure, the more likely legislative acts
were to be concluded in early stages. As is shown in Figure 6, the
percentage of legislation adopted during the first reading increased
from 33% in the 5th legislature to 72% in the 6th legislature, and
reached 85% in the 7th legislature. In contrast, legislation that had
to go through conciliation dropped from 21% to 5% and 2%.
Sources: European Commission (2009); European Parliament (2014b).
Figure 6 Comparison of Stages of Agreement among Legislatures
In the view of the Commission, and the Council as well, such
statistical results are a source of pride.
The most important change has been further improvement
in the working relationship between the three institutions.
With the passing of time the three institutions have
developed a relationship based on trust and pragmatism,
where agreement could be reached earlier and earlier in
the procedure, reducing drastically the number of
conciliations and provoking and explosion of first reading
agreements. (European Commission, 2009: 2)