Trump and the FBI: Four very quick questions and answers from SANFORD LEVINSON

US President Donald Trump, to the bewildered horror of many, has dismissed FBI director James Comey in the middle of an investigation about his aides' ties to Russia. Some even call this situation a constitutional crisis. We have shot Constitutional Law professor Sandy Levinson four very quick questions and received four equally short answers.

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Brexit Lawsuits, But Not As You Know Them 

Calling in the lawyers is becoming a frequent response to the challenges of Brexit. While court actions on matters of constitutional law are well known, there is another, less publicised, avenue of legal resistance. The consequence: the Brexit bill is about to become a lot bigger.

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Schranken für die weltweite Überwachung? Was die jüngsten Ankündigungen der NSA zu bedeuten haben

Am gestrigen Nachmittag gab die NSA überraschend bekannt, eine zentrale Komponente ihres globalen Überwachungssystems zu beenden. In der Zukunft will die Behörde nur Emails speichern, die von oder an verdächtige Ausländer gesendet wurden („to or from communications“). Hingegen werden nicht mehr alle Internet-Nachrichten daraufhin gescannt, ob sie Daten verdächtiger Ausländer im Text der Nachricht nennen („about communications“). Weniger Überwachung klingt gut. Und die ersten Reaktionen in den USA sind verhalten positiv, wird damit doch einer zentralen Forderung von BürgerrechtlerInnen entsprochen. Doch was bedeutet der Kurswechsel aus europäischer und deutscher Sicht?

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Much Ado About Nothing? Legal and Political Schooling for the Hungarian Government

After his infamous law against the Central European University, the EU Commission has announced a treaty infringement procedure against Hungary. That will probably be of limited help against the systemic threat to the rule of law in Viktor Orbán’s state. Politically more effective might be the pressure exerted by the European People’s Party.

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Pakistan’s Reluctant Constitutionalism

On 20 April 2017, the Supreme Court of Pakistan ruled in one of the greatest cases in its turbulent history: the impeachment of the prime minister for involvements in shady financial dealings that bubbled up after the Panama Papers. Nothing happened; the court only showed Nawaz Sharif the yellow card. But while Pakistan narrowly missed her constitutional moment by a single judge’s vote, the court’s ruling displayed tremendous democratic maturity.

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Vertrauenswürdigkeit und Rechtsstaatlichkeit: Was die Kritiker der EU nicht sehen (wollen)

Es gibt Probleme der Rechtsstaatlichkeit im europäischen Rechtsraum. Viele sprechen gar von einer Vertrauenskrise in die Europäische Union. Trägt Vertrauen als europapolitische und juristische Perspektive, und was sind die Implikationen?

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The Spanish Constitutional Court on the Path of Self-Destruction

Recently, the Spanish Constitutional Court has published one more decision in application of the new reform of the Law on Constitutional Court which increased its powers for the execution of its own decisions. It is clear that Catalonian sovereignist politicians are acting irresponsibly and provoking the Spanish powers. The only good way to answer to this challenge is a balanced and neutral response of the Constitutional Court every time they adopt an illegal act. Instead, the Court assumed a political role. He tries to stop even any talk about independence. By doing so, it fails to respect its own role as keeper of a Constitutional framework where very diverse ideologies can be discussed.

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No Compromises on Reproductive Rights – Why Ireland Needs Constitutional Change

On April 22, the Irish Citizens Assembly has in an overwhelming majority confirmed the need for change in Irish abortion laws. According to the majority of members of the assembly, the 8th amendment of the Irish Constitution, that de facto imposes a constitutional ban on abortion in most scenarios, needs to be amended or replaced. What constitutional change is needed?

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How Old is 14 Really? On Child Marriage and Case-by-Case Justice

A bizarrely archaic hiccup for old-school historicists, curiously ambivalent and legally intriguing to others, child marriages currently enjoy an unforeseen centrality in Germany’s public life. Europe today is hard pressed to look beyond its shores for instructive twenty-first century survival scripts. India’s past offers some lessons on child marriages for the current German predicament.

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Türkei-Referendum vor dem EGMR: Warum der Gang nach Straßburg diesmal wohl nicht helfen wird

Nachdem die türkische Wahlkommission den Antrag einiger Oppositionsparteien auf Annullierung des Verfassungsreferendums vom 16. April verworfen hat, erwägt die oppositionelle CHP Medienberichten zufolge den Gang nach Straßburg. Dem halten türkische Spitzenpolitiker entgegen, der EGMR sei hierfür nicht zuständig. Was ist hiervon zu halten?

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