March 11, 2016

Maciej Kisilowski (CEU) on the "moment of truth" in Poland's constitutional dispute

Network member Maciej Kisilowski (CEU) has a new piece in EUObserver entitled "Moment of truth for Poland in constitutional dispute".  The opening passages are below and the remainder can be read here.

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The ruling Law and Justice (PiS) party in Poland suffered two major setbacks this week.

On Wednesday (9 March), the nation’s Constitutional Tribunal declared a sweeping amendment limiting the tribunal’s powers to be unconstitutional.

On Friday, the Venice Commission, an advisory body to the Council of Europe in Strasbourg, issued a powerful concurrence. Like the Polish court, it did not find a single major provision of the amendment, passed by PiS last December, consistent with European principles of democracy and the rule of law.

The twin decisions bring about a moment of truth for PiS. The party can either retreat from its overreach and try to implement its reform agenda within the current constitutional framework or set Poland on the path to authoritarianism.

Warsaw’s international partners should strongly support the moderate course without risking their own “liberal overreach”.

[continue reading here]

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