Constitution Digest

News and announcements from the Comparative Constitutions Project

September 15, 2017

Spain cracking down on Catalan vote. On Wednesday, Spain’s state prosecutor opened criminal investigations into more than 700 mayors for their support of Catalonia’s independence referendum, scheduled for October 1. The Spanish Constitutional Court last week ruled to suspend the vote, and the government has tried to prevent it from happening.
Guatemalan Congress tries, fails to relax punishment for corruption. Just days after voting to preserve President Jimmy Morales’ immunity from prosecution, Guatemala’s Congress on Wednesday approved legislation to reduce punishments for campaign finance violations. After the Constitutional Court provisionally blocked the legislation, Congress announced that it will withdraw the controversial reforms, which many saw as an attempt to protect the president and other politicians from graft investigations.
Israeli Supreme Court overturns military exemption for Orthodox Jews. On Tuesday, the Supreme Court of Israel ruled that the government cannot exempt ultra-Orthodox Jews from military service. Some argue the ruling could threaten Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu’s governing coalition, which includes both Orthodox parties and military advocates.
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