Half of the Spanish judges and magistrates, more than 2,500, have taken up arms before the assault on Justice perpetrated by Pedro Sánchez’s PSOE, and his partners from Podemos. An assault that materialized with the change of the Organic Law of the Judicial Power (LOPJ) that prevents the General Council of the Judicial Power (CGPJ), the governing body of judges, from making discretionary appointments. A) Yes, more than 2,500 togas, of the 5,400 in Spain, have had to go to Europe to request protection. A call for help from the judiciary that shows the despotic way of acting of Sánchez and his partners.
The letter requesting help has been sent jointly by the Professional Association of the Magistracy (APM), the Francisco de Vitoria Judges and Magistrates Association (AJFV) and the Independent Judicial Forum (FJI), representing more than 2,500 Spanish judges. It is striking that the only association that has not signed is Judges and Judges for Democracy (JJpD), a group of magistrates absolutely linked to the PSOE.
But despite the refusal of the magistrates close to the PSOE, the rest of the associations have sent a letter to the vice president of the European Union for Values and Transparency, Vêra Jourová, and the European Commissioner, Didier Reynders, denouncing what they consider a «Risk of serious violation» of the rule of law in Spain due to the latest legislative reforms that according to the judges affect judicial independence.
In the six-page letter, the signatories ask the European Commission to the appropriate measures are adopted to stop the interference of the Executive. Among the measures they are asking for is the initiation of a procedure against Spain under article 7 of the Treaty on the European Union (TEU). This article includes the possibility of sanctioning a member state “for violating basic values of the European Union such as human rights or the rule of law and involving the loss of voting rights in the European Council.”
Specifically, in this case, the judges request the European Commission to take cognizance of their letter about the legislative reforms on “the blackout and disempowerment” of the General Council of the Judiciary due to the reform that prevents appointments while this body is in office, and what they define as a “Colonization by political parties”, which compromise the appointments of high judicial positions, as well as all governmental activity on judges, “and with it their independence and impartiality.”
In the opinion of the three associations, this action by Pedro Sanchez and its Government partners puts the rule of law at risk. In fact, in the letter they affirm that what was approved by the Government of Spain “constitutes a clear risk of serious violation by Spain of the values contemplated in article 2 of the Treaty of the European Union and, therefore, of the Union law ”.
In addition, in their brief, the Spanish magistrates also demand that the European Union, from the Commission’s sphere of competence, urge the Government of Spain to address the legislative reforms that are compatible with the guarantees required by Article 49 of the Treaty, in the terms in which the Court of Justice of the European Union (CJEU) has been interpreting them.
They add that, “as a last resort and if the situation denounced is not remedied”, the procedure provided for in Article 7 of the Treaty on European Union be initiated, since “the European Commission, together with other institutions of the Union and its Member States , is responsible, under the Treaties, for guarantee respect for the rule of law as a fundamental value of our Union and to ensure that EU laws, values and principles are observed. ‘
In their letter to Europe, the judges explained to the Commission that the current election system of 12 of the 10 members of the CGPJ, those of judicial origin, has been endorsed by the constitutional Court, although the condition of constitutionality passed because the political formations did not distribute the members according to their parliamentary representation.
«After 35 years, the risks foreseen by the Constitutional Court have turned into unfortunate realities. It can be affirmed that the current de facto system is contrary to the Constitution, and to the requirements of the European institutions, according to which the political authorities cannot intervene at any point in the process in the election of the members of judicial origin, “the magistrates state .
In their letter, they also explain to the EU that the current process of renewal of the CGPJ began more than two years ago and that since then the negotiators of the political parties have met without reaching an agreement. «In this way, the decision of the legislative chambers is supplanted by the dominant political parties., which have also refused to modify the system for electing judicial members, despite the fact that some party has proposed it and the judicial associations have demanded it in accordance with European recommendations, “they add.
And it is, in his view, in this context, that the PSOE and Podemos want to change the form of election in the Congress of Deputies that would reduce the necessary three-fifths majorities to elect the members.
A reform, which as they explain «Its purpose is that the CGPJ cannot perform its most important function, which is to appoint senior judicial officers, when their mandate has expired ”. The legal reform abolishes other powers of the CGPJ that the associations consider essential, such as the legitimacy to promote conflicts of powers between constitutional bodies.
“In sum, reduces the functions of the CGPJ to merely bureaucratic aspects, to the detriment of its essential function: to be the guarantor of the
judicial independence “, remind the judges to the European Commission.
In the opinion of these associations, “it is a law of submission of the Judicial Power to the political parties that dominate at all times, which it is the beginning of the road to totalitarianism, the impairment of human rights and corruption ”.