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Recent events (if not all of history) have made clear that the northeastern states of the US belong more to Europe than to the remaining US states.

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Is there a mechanism for at least some of those states (perhaps the original colonies) to join the EU, either while remaining US states or after secession from the US? What series of steps wold have to be taken for example for Massachusetts or New York to accomplish this?

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    Plate tectonics, presumably - geographical constraints are part of the Copenhagen Criteria that regulate access to the EU, so unless continental drifts lands NY on European shores this is not going to happen. On the other hand these are "political" criteria, so if the EU finds it in their interest to admit those states they would find a way. Which they would not, since the EU is not in favour of states seceding (too many minorities of their own ). In other words, it's complicated, maybe too complicated for an exhaustive answer that looks at all eventualities, but realistically, that's a no-go. – Eike Pierstorff Jul 22 at 19:41
  • @EikePierstorff That's probably the best insight: that seceding in order to join is not going to go over well in the present moment. Making friends with "seceders" would send a message the EU doesn't want to send. – orome Jul 22 at 21:35
  • Your premise is wrong. It's more a question of transportation networks and virus transmission than of any commonality of interests. New York City is a transportation hub, particularly for flights from Europe, so it is logical for it to be the point of entry for a virus that's active in Europe. It's highly congested, so the virus spreads easliy there. People frequently travel from NYC to other northeastern cities, and to Florida, so the virus spreads to those places... Meanwhile, the virus doesn't spread as readily in less congested places, probably including rural areas of the northeast. – jamesqf Jul 23 at 4:03
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No, for two reasons.

Firstly, Article I, Section 10(3) of the US Constitution prevents any US state from entering any international organisation without the permission of Congress:

No State shall, without the Consent of Congress, lay any Duty of Tonnage, keep Troops, or Ships of War in time of Peace, enter into any Agreement or Compact with another State, or with a foreign Power, or engage in War, unless actually invaded, or in such imminent Danger as will not admit of delay.

Secondly, even if the state concerned secedes from the US, Article 49 of the Consolidated Treaty on European Union will throw up an issue of geography:

Any European State which respects the values referred to in Article 2 and is committed to promoting them may apply to become a member of the Union. The European Parliament and national Parliaments shall be notified of this application. The applicant State shall address its application to the Council, which shall act unanimously after consulting the Commission and after receiving the consent of the European Parliament, which shall act by a majority of its component members. The conditions of eligibility agreed upon by the European Council shall be taken into account.

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  • So secession is a prerequisite, and then the EU would have to change the rules (not likely given the point EikePierstorf raises). – orome Jul 22 at 21:38
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    I'm not completely convinced of the geography argument in the case of the Americas, I do think we were considered Europeans before we weren't any longer. And a "European State" maybe today implies something to do with geography, but could just as easily be interpreted more philosophically if both sides of such an attempt really wanted it to happen. Still, +1 because I do think this is the contemporary understanding. – Jeff Lambert Jul 23 at 14:58
  • A "European state" is a state that the EU deems to be European. Its not a geographic term. If the EU decided to allows the US or a fragment of the US to enter, they could, simply by voting so. This exact issue was discussed a while back in another question, I'm trying to dig up that link. – Polygnome Jul 25 at 19:04

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