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Date: July 6, 2022 3:40 am

Updating a third of the Constitution has become one step closer. The PSOE will present this Friday a bill, which will be considered urgently, to allow the government to elect two judges, whom it must appoint as members of the guarantee court and the judiciary, both of which are its own. The rule proposed by and confirmed by EL PAÍS would allow the Judicial General Council, even while it is in power, to make appointments. The reform will change article 570 bis of Organic Law 6/1985 on the judiciary.

According to PP sources, the conservative formation is upset that they have not received any communication from the government since Election Day in Andalusia last Sunday. The main opposition party also claims that the executive branch has not entered into negotiations on legal or economic agreements, or on the next NATO summit.

On June 12, the terms of office of four of the 12 members of the court of guarantees expired, the renewal of which corresponds to the executive branch (two) and the governing body of judges (two more). According to EL PAÍS, the Constitutional Court was preparing to block the government’s intention to appoint two magistrates of this body, without waiting for the General Council of the Judiciary to be able to choose two, whom it should appoint at the next renewal of powers. the ultimate interpreter of Magna Carta.

In March 2021, a reform promoted by a two-party government coalition was approved that limits the powers of the judiciary while it is in office, as is currently the case. This measure directly affects the current Council, whose term expired in December 2018. Under this modification, the CGPJ cannot appoint the presidents of the courts or chambers (provincial courts, superior courts, national and supreme courts), nor the magistrates of the higher courts, or the two magistrates of the Constitutional Court, which the law leaves in the hands of the Council.

The legal changes sparked outrage from right-wing parties, including the NP, which filed an unconstitutional appeal in May on the grounds that it violated four articles of the constitution.

Direct renewal of the Constitution was one of the government’s plans in case the People’s Party continued to delay the agreement with the executive branch. The renewal of the constitutional bodies turned into a very long game of chess between the two great parties, the PSOE and the PP, in which the people blocked the General Council of the Judiciary for almost the entire duration of the Legislative Assembly.

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The NP, in a completely unprecedented manner, blocked the General Council of the Judiciary for almost the entire legislature. Prime Minister Pedro Sanchez and his immediate negotiators on the issue – at that time Felix Bolaños, minister of the presidency – tried everything with Pablo Casado. The pact was practically closed twice, and at the last moment the leader of the PP backed down due to pressure from the conservative world. Negotiations resumed after the appointment of Alberto Núñez Feijoo as the popular president, but with the intention that if the PP continues to delay it, the executive will directly appoint two of its respective magistrates in the Constitutional Court, and with this the majority will change without waiting for the PP. The decision was expected after the Andalusians on Sunday, as it happened.

The Constitutional Court took advantage of the visit of European Commissioner for Values ​​and Transparency Vera Yurova on June 16 to argue that an agreement between the government and the NP must be reached as soon as possible to extend it. The President of the Court, Pedro González-Trevijano, and the Vice-President of the Court of Guarantees, Juan Antonio Siol, emphasized that they both agreed with the European Commissioner that in the process of changing the four magistrates, the Constitution must be observed “in its entirety”, a phrase that alludes to the fact that the legal position is that the Constitutional Court is renewed every three years by a third. A day later, four former justice ministers — former socialist ministers Juan Fernando López Aguilar and Juan Carlos Campo, and the popular Alberto Ruiz Gallardon and Rafael Catala — agreed in an act of the Madrid Bar that they consider parliamentary agreements to do more than just allow for the unblocking of senior judges.


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