From the Document: "In December 2007, leaders of the European Union (EU) signed the Lisbon Treaty. With the completion of ratification by the Czech Republic on November 3, 2009, all 27 EU member countries have ratified the document, and it is expected to come into force on December 1, 2009. The Lisbon Treaty reforms the EU's governing institutions and decision-making process to enable the EU to operate more effectively. The treaty grew out of the proposed 'constitutional treaty' that foundered after French and Dutch voters rejected it in referendums in 2005. The Lisbon Treaty seeks to give the EU a stronger and more coherent voice with the creation of a new position, President of the European Council. This individual will chair the activities of the 27 EU heads of state or government, working to facilitate consensus and ensure policy continuity, guide the strategic direction of policy-making, and give the EU greater visibility on the world stage. Additionally, the Lisbon Treaty creates the new position of High Representative of the Union for Foreign Affairs and Security Policy, a 'de facto' EU foreign minister who would be supported by a new EU diplomatic service. […] This report provides information on the Lisbon Treaty and possible U.S.-EU implications that may be of interest to the 111th Congress."
CRS Report for Congress, RS21618
U.S. Department of State, Foreign Press Centers: http://fpc.state.gov/