The Union’s common values enshrined in Article 2 TEU – democracy, the rule of law and fundamental rights – are under pressure in several Member States. Against this backdrop, the Court of Justice has set a remarkable development in motion. In a recent line of cases, starting in 2018 with Associação Sindical dos Juízes Portugueses, the Union's values have taken centre stage. This book argues that the Court’s recourse to Article 2 TEU goes far beyond constitutional pathos: Article 2 TEU has been turned into an operational, judicially applicable provision. In a first step, the book captures this emerging Article 2 TEU-based jurisprudence in empirical, doctrinal and theoretical terms. At its heart, the book seeks to advance a conceptual framework for its future development. Article 2 TEU should be understood as featuring a dual character that resonates between two dimensions: an EU dimension limited to the EU legal order and a Verbund dimension extending to the common “whole” of the Union and its Member States. In its second and third part, the book sets out to explore the multifaceted potential of Article 2 TEU in each of these two dimensions. The fourth and last part will assess the risks of placing an activated Article 2 TEU into the hands of the Luxembourg judges and propose ways to recalibrate this jurisprudence.