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Samuel Gregg: The crumbling anti-politics of constitutional patriotism

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The Kantian dream of undoing real nations keeps foundering on the shoals of human nature’s need for real attachments to place, says Acton research director Samuel Gregg in a new article for Law & Liberty:

If there’s anything that political earthquakes like Brexit and the ongoing spread of nationalist feeling throughout the European Union demonstrates, it’s that popular support for Europe’s integration project is floundering. In early 2018, France’s pro-EU president Emmanuel Macron publicly acknowledged that France would probably vote to leave the EU if given a simple in/out choice. Politics in a once stalwartly pro-EU nation like Italy is now dominated by Eurosceptic parties.

Advocates for deeper European integration like German chancellor Angela Merkel seldom pass up chances to insist, as she did in a November 2018 speech, that “Nation-states should be willing to give up their sovereignty today.” Many Europeans undoubtedly continue to favor the EU’s commercial conveniences. But outside an increasingly-isolated political class which dominates ever-weakening establishment political parties, vocal enthusiasts for a supranational European state are becoming scarce.

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Joe Carter Joe Carter is a Senior Editor at the Acton Institute. Joe also serves as an editor at the The Gospel Coalition, a communications specialist for the Ethics and Religious Liberty Commission of the Southern Baptist Convention, and as an adjunct professor of journalism at Patrick Henry College. He is the editor of the NIV Lifehacks Bible and co-author of How to Argue like Jesus: Learning Persuasion from History's Greatest Communicator (Crossway).

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