Auteur: | By Honor Mahony
EUOBSERVER / BRUSSELS - Member states are about to agree the most controversial issue - the balance of power in a future EU - of the EU Constitution after hours of wrangling.
A final proposal on the institutional questions is set to be accepted by all 25 member states, according to Andrew Duff, a senior member of the body that drew up the Constitution text.
The Irish proposal suggests that for a decision to be taken in the future it must be accepted by at least 55% member states (and numerically at least 15 of them) representing 65% of the population.
EU leaders are also to agree that the number of European Commissioners will be reduced to 2/3 of the number of its member states by 2014 - but an article saying that this can be changed by unanimity at a future date has also been included.
On the European Parliament, they have agreed that the smallest member states get six MEPs and the biggest no more than 96 while the overall ceiling may be raised to 750 MEPs.
According to sources, a reference to Christianity is not to make it into the text. Instead Poland and other countries, which had pushed so hard for its inclusion, are to get a unilateral declaration.
Diplomats said that while the Irish were drawing up the new proposals, the rest of the EU leaders were watching football (Italy versus Sweden).
They were called in one-by-one to give their imput on the proposals.