Vision or pragmatism?
9. It is perhaps because of its emphasis on consolidation
and building on initiatives brought forward following Tampere
that the Hague Programme has been criticised for a lack of vision.
The Immigration Law Practitioners' Association (ILPA) characterised
it as a "decidedly muted event".
Dr Xanthaki argued that "it fails to propose specific areas
where legislation would be welcome", something that in her
view indicated a lack of general consensus among Member States
and a lack of clear vision for the immediate future in JHA.
The Government on the other hand welcomed the general direction
of the Programme. Baroness Ashton supported its emphasis on pragmatism
and the firm statement that future action in JHA must respect
the principles of subsidiarity and proportionality as well as
the different legal traditions of Member States.
The Law Society similarly noted that EU action in this area must
respect the different legal systems of Member States and focus
on better law making.
We too welcome the emphasis that the Hague Programme places
on respect for the principles of subsidiarity and proportionality
and for the legal traditions of Member States in developing legislation
in Justice and Home Affairs. We expect the Government to be vigilant
in ensuring full respect for these principles.