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New Members in Romania’s Constitutional Court

Romanias Constitutional Court has 3 new members as of Monday.

New Members in Romania’s Constitutional Court
New Members in Romania’s Constitutional Court

, 10.06.2013, 13:57

From an institution that in theory should have been present in the media only in exceptional cases, the Constitutional Court has turned into a main and sometimes uneasy player on the Romanian political scene. Over the past years the Constitutional Court’s frequent interventions, following equally frequent appeals to its rulings, have been interpreted by politicians according to their interests. The idea that even the Constitutional Court of Romania is subject to political interference, like any other Romanian public institution, is no surprise. The 9 judges of the Constitutional Court are appointed on purely political criteria, something that has become a Romanian trademark. The Presidency, the Chamber of Deputies and the Senate have the right to appoint 3 representatives each. The suspicion that the 3 new members of the Court have also been appointed by political criteria seems to be confirmed.



The 3 new members are Daniel Morar, the former head of the National Anti-Corruption Directorate and allegedly a close associate of the Romanian President, Mona Pivniceru, a former justice minister who has the support of the Liberals in the ruling coalition, and Valer Dorneanu, backed by the Social Democratic Party, also in the governing coalition. The latter were nominated and validated by the Senate and the Chamber of Deputies. The interest in the Constitutional Court and in the appointments to the Court is fueled by the tough political wrangling.



The climax of political fighting in Romania was reached in the summer of 2012 when the current power, the center leftist Social Liberal Union, waged a bitter war on several institutional fronts, to impeach President Traian Basescu. The president’s seat was however saved by the Constitutional Court, which decided that for the impeachment referendum to be validated, half plus one of the voters on the electoral lists had to cast their vote. Political analysts say that although one year has passed, the hostility the Social Liberal Union shows towards the Constitutional Court is as fresh as it was back then, since the ruling parties are keen on reducing the powers of the Constitutional Court, as the opposition claims. However, the coalition in Power invokes the need to change the way the members of the Court are appointed and to clarify the court’s jurisdiction.

Photo: geralt / pixabay.com
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