The European Union is bound to respect the national identities of member states. States might, on occasion, define their national identities in ways that breach inclusive constitutional values (e.g. equality) protected under TEU Article 2. The assumption behind the recognition of diverse constitutional identities is the peaceful coexistence of both, which is challenged by illiberal national developments. We see the relationship between the constitutional recognition of exclusive values (e.g. dominant ethnicity or religion) and inclusive constitutional values as a zero-sum game; every gain by the proponents of emergent authoritarianism translates to a loss for constitutional democracy. While exclusive norms appear in virtually every constitutional system, a critical mass of exclusive values can lead to the hollowing out of a democratic order, both at the national and supranational levels. To try to identify the line where this shift happens, we rely on the limits of toleration and recognition of exclusive norms and identity elements of minority communities in liberal theories of multiculturalism (e.g. Raz, Taylor, Kymlicka). We think that the case of illiberal minorities raises structurally similar theoretical questions, insights and experiences as the dilemma defined above, namely the challenge of illiberal states undermining fundamental EU values.