Constitution Digest

News and announcements from the Comparative Constitutions Project

July 27, 2017

Polish President vetoes two controversial court reform bills. Polish President Andrzej Duda vetoed two of three controversial judicial reform bills on Monday, blocking legislation that would have forced the retirement of all Supreme Court judges and empowered the government to make judicial appointments, but signed a law to increase government control of lower courts. On Wednesday, the European Union announced that it would move to suspend Poland’s voting rights if the government continues to undermine judicial independence.
Canadian Supreme Court rules on indigenous consultation. The Supreme Court of Canada ruled on Wednesday that the National Energy Board (NEB) failed to fulfill constitutional obligations when consulting with an Inuit community regarding seismic testing for oil and gas near the community’s territory. However, the court ruled in another case that the NEB sufficiently consulted with an indigenous community regarding reversal and expansion of the Line 9 oil pipeline, and ordered the community to pay legal fees.
Venezuela to vote on Constituent Assembly. On July 30, Venezuelans are scheduled to elect a Constituent Assembly to draft a new constitution, though the opposition has vowed to boycott the vote. The constitutional revision plans, which many believe to be a blatant power grab by President Nicolas Maduro, have been met with massive protests and strikes.
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