Friday, July 24, 2009

German Court decision was a fundamental rejection of the Lisbon Treaty

The German Constitutional Court in what has become known as the Karlsruhe judgement issued a remarkable verdict on 30 June and while the international media presented it as approval of the ratification of the Lisbon Treaty, careful reading of the judgement shows that it is a fundamental rejection of the core constitutional content of the Treaty. So writes former MEP Jens Peter Bonde in a hard hitting article in

The Karlsruhe Court according to Bonde;
“effectively finds that the Lisbon Treaty would increase the EU's widely acknowledged democratic deficit if its ratification is not linked to the adoption of internal procedures at Member State level such as to safeguard the involvement of the National Parliaments and voters in each Member State. The verdict applies only to Germany, of course. But it has significant implications for all Member States, including those which have already approved and ratified the Lisbon Treaty”.

“If Germany's ratification of the Lisbon Treaty is found to be illegal and in contravention of basic democratic principles, in the absence of such parliamentary controls, should not the same principle apply in all other Member States that claim to be democracies”?

According to Bonde, "The Karlsruhe judgement should inspire people to call for similar constitutional and parliamentary challenges in other EU countries. This may establish strengthened procedures for national parliamentary control and safeguard areas where national parliamentary democracies can decide things on their own without interference from, for example, the EU Court of Justice."

ELN Comment
The Irish Government, in opposition to the decision of the Irish people who rejected Lisbon precisely for some of the reasons presented in the Karlsruhe judgement, is forging ahead with a new Referendum. The new Referendum has been arranged despite the fact that not one comma of the Treaty has been changed.

The Karlsruhe decision has established an important legal principle maybe it will take a similar legal challenge in the Irish Courts to bring the Irish Government to its senses.