Entries RSS Feed Share Send to Facebook Tweet This Accessible version

Rule of law conditionality: a Polish (and Hungarian) take

December 4th, 2020

In the main pro-government daily, a leading Polish right-wing journalist condemns attempts to empower the European Commission to punish member countries accused of breaching rule of law principles.

In an interview with Magyar Nemzet, Paweł Lisicki, the founding editor of the Polish weekly Do Rzeczy (To the Point) accuses the European Union of contravening the basic principle of the rule of law, by trying to make Union payments to member countries conditional on rule of law compliance. This is a paradox, he writes, as by stressing the rule of law, it is actually undermining it. Under the scheme, Lisicki explains, the European Commission could cut transfers to a country for any piece of legislation deemed not in harmony with their interpretation of the rule of law. He mentions, by way of example, remarks by Commission President Ursula von der Leyen, that she would exert pressure on all member countries to extend the rights of the LBGT community, including the authorisation of same-sex marriage and the right of same-sex couples to adopt children. Such matters pertain to the member countries’ national competence, he remarks, yet they could, nevertheless, be punished by the Commission for not complying with similar expectations. In such cases, Lisicki concludes, the Commission (the executive) would play the role of the judiciary, in clear violation of the separation of powers, a basic principle of the rule of law.

Tags: ,