People in favour of the United States of Europe are usually motivated by pragmatism, not idealism. If European partners want to move ahead together, if they want to be stable internally and if they want to be in a position to take collective action externally, then embarking on a close political union would seem to be dictated by reason. This is not currently being called into question by many Heads of State and Government, EU Commissioners, Members of Parliament, academics and opinion leaders alike. But what kind of union are we talking about? We believe that by voicing support for the establishment of the United States of Europe, we are making a greater contribution to the much-needed democratic debate I on the subject, than those who are given to talking about deeper integration or the advantages of a political union. In a forthright debate about the future, people who are against the establishment of the United States of Europe will be able to make their views heard and map out their proposed alternatives to the same extent as people, like us, who are very much in favour of the idea (annot. 1). In doing so, it would help to shed light on a democratic dispute between competing political options. This would also refute the widespread impression that policymaking consists of nothing more than a set of decisions, to which there is no other alternative.