A Year and a Half in the EU – the First Accomplishments of the Riigikogu
The article focuses on the relations between the legislative and executive powers in Estonia against the background of EU membership.
It first summarizes the theoretical discussion about the changing role of parliaments in contemporary national political systems. It further focuses on the position of the Estonian Riigikogu and its relations with the government in shaping the national positions in EU affairs and exercising scrutiny. Previous enlargements have shown that durable structural relationships between the actors of the domestic political system regarding the management of EU affairs are formed during the first years of membership. Therefore, it is important for the Riigikogu to establish itself as an active actor in EU affairs today. Contrary to the commonly used argument, the article argues that the position of the national parliament vis-à-vis the government can is fact be enhanced through EU membership. The article concludes on the basis of the activities of the Riigikogu that it has used its legal power well and is in the process of establishing itself as a strong actor in the shaping of national positions in EU affairs in Estonia.