The last few hours have set the public debate on fire, an issue that could seem legal, technical, procedural and therefore far removed from the social debate, from the street, has come to dominate the front pages of all the media, saturate the social networks and be commented on. the street. At some point it had to happen, it is logical and to be expected because we have spent years of lethargy, of silence forced by law and imposed through masks and of generating fear and dread among citizens. The issue that has uncovered Pandora’s box with statements by all political leaders has a legal origin, respecting the procedures established by law to legislate, modify, introduce legal changes and ultimately comply with the rules, always respecting the supreme law that emanates from the Spanish Constitution.
The reality is that since the president of the government took the reins of the Spanish nation, we are used to hearing announcements of surreal, surprising and almost always ridiculous laws and measures. The humor of the Spanish people turns them into a joke, into a cartoon, into a parody, into jokes and memes and then “another round of shrimps” as a classic on Spanish radio said. This endurance and eternal indifference or neglect is very useful for a ruler determined to perpetuate himself in power and to modify the law and coexistence to his liking, since the citizen, political and media response is null or very soft. Consequently, they are increasingly daring to legislate for more radical and activist minorities, necessary for their parliamentary support but far removed from the majority of the citizenry.
What has happened this week is that the Court of Guarantees of the Constitutional Court decided to paralyze the legal reform promoted by the PSOE and Podemos to change –by express means and behind the back of parliamentary control– the reinforced functioning of both the Court itself and the General Council of the Judiciary (CGPJ) called to renew it. In other words, they tell the government that it must do things in accordance with the law and respect the rule of law, so as not to become a partisan democracy that only respects the decisions of His Holiness, the all-powerful leader.
After the decision of the Constitutional Court, the president himself held a press conference attacking the judiciary and announcing “necessary measures”, demonstrating his moral character, he intends to do what he wants regardless of what the laws promulgate and what the courts dictate. Thus, he denies the separation of powers, the legitimacy of the magistrates of the TC to exercise their functions and pretend to violate the rule of law. The professor of Constitutional Law at the University of Valencia, Carlos Flores, recalled several notes in this regard: “the magistrates are not “expired”, but their mandate has been extended under art. 17.2 of the Organic Law of the Constitutional Court”, the jurist also explained that “the extended magistrates have exactly the same powers as the others”. In addition, he points out that the decision of the Constitutional Court “is not preventing parliament from legislating. It is preventing parliament from infringing on the rights of parliamentary minorities through an irregular procedure.”
The democratic adjective annuls everything, that is, the left uses this word or that classic expression of popular sovereignty, to eliminate and cancel the rule of law, the rule of law, legal certainty, and everything that a serious state entails. that guarantees peace, justice and coexistence. We live in a serious moment and words are twisted and manipulated beyond the limits to lie blatantly and to falsify the truth, which is always the big loser. Those who say that Congress or the Senate can do what they deem to be, ignoring the law and the decisions of the courts, are lying.
The most visual example to understand the difference between respect for the law and popular sovereignty, that is, what the people want, we can see in the cases of rapists or murderers. If, when you are stopped by the police, a referendum was held in your town or city, what would people vote for? Instead, the law guarantees that they have the right to a fair trial, that they have a legal defense and a process that respects guarantees and freedoms. That is the difference between trusting everything to the popular majority that at any time can decide on rules of coexistence or respect that a legislation, a set of laws and regulations are respected and complied with and the judges and courts are guarantors of their compliance and correct application .
The next few days will be decisive, we are living in an exceptional situation, and in addition to the work of magistrates, courts and other actors, political communication and the mass media have a key leading role in how citizens will understand the substance of the matter. For now, Santiago Abascalpresident of Vox announced at a press conference from the Congress of Deputies that next Friday they will file a complaint against Pedro Sanchez in the Supreme Court and Alberto Núñez Feijóopresident of the PP, showed himself in an institutional, firm and serious tone, but once again offered his willingness to agree to changes and legal reforms with the PSOE, demonstrating infinite patience or supreme ignorance.
The legal battle must be transferred to the political arena, also to the media and society, in fact, there are already platforms proposing from the demonstration on January 21 to the dreamed (by some) great coalition between PP and PSOE to agree on the points that affect the majority of citizens and leave radical, nationalist and separatist minorities aside when it comes to governing and legislating. Everything points to a very busy 2023, with the eternal economic crisis and especially with the spring elections just around the corner. Hopefully among all this tidal wave the truth will not lose the battle again.
Opinion | The rule of law prevails (for now). By Joseca Arnau