In the aftermath of the most ambitious accession bargain, attention has been directed away from EU negotiations to the tricky task of selling the elite enlargement deal to the voters. Focusing on past enlargement rounds, this book explores the link between diverse elite motives for pursuing membership and relatively constant variation in EU public support. National elite attitudes to integration contain the clues to the explanation of why utilitarian and affective support has traditionally been higher in some countries than in others. EU public opinion does not simply reflect the economic interests and identities of individuals faced with an objective reality. Rather, citizens face an endogenously shaped world, filtered by elite opinions on membership. Drawing upon "flexibility," this book advances a model of "theoretical differentiation" distinguishing between rationally and affectively driven entrants. Empirically, the tenacity of "differentiation" in EU legitimacy is examined through the use of original and secondary data. Combining qualitative and quantitative methods, this study aspires to further debate on enlargement and public opinion engaging scholars and EU practitioners.
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