One cannot address the issue of European migration and asylum without acknowledging that European Union (EU) policy governs this area of public policy unevenly and incompletely. While there has been tremendous growth in EU competence in the past 25 years, member states still wield substantial autonomy and discretion in determining policy. Section II begins by examining the development of national policies in the post-War period in order to provide the context for presenting the leading explanatory frameworks for European migration policy. Knowledge of the historical and theoretical background is essential for appreciating the EU’s present system of migration and asylum. Sections III and IV provide a survey of the development of EU policy in migration and asylum followed by a discussion of the roles of its central institutional actors – Council, Commission, and European Parliament – to set the stage for Section V’s consideration of policy across four realms: legal migration, unauthorized migration, asylum, and integration. The examinations of the institutional framework and the individual policy realms will allow us to assess the validity of theories positing that states have lost control over the migration process or that national European policies are converging upon a single model.