In this article, I compare constitutional and administrative models in terms of their implications for the EU legal order’s interaction with other legal regimes. I aim to make a twofold argument on the implications of the EU’s constitutional self-image to the world political order. First, as the CJEU adopts an identity-centred strong constitutionalist position on the Union’s external relations, it implicitly frames the EU legal order’s interaction with other legal regimes as in a federated order. Yet the strong political implications of federation are likely to bring about more inter-regime conflicts and provoke reactions from Member States. Second, I provide a critique of the administrative model in the light of GAL’s intervention in inter-regime relations, suggesting a post-identity constitutional alternative in times of crisis. Freed from the value-laden concept of constitutional identity, but without de-constitutionalizing itself, the EU can have the benefits of both the constitutional and administrative models by moving towards a weak-form constitutional order. In the event, the debate, as to whether to conduct the EU’s external relations according to the constitutional or the administrative model, is misconceived.
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