A Motion of No Confidence and Political Power Struggles Amidst a Pandemic

Only in office since the beginning of February, Kosovo’s Prime Minister Albin Kurti did not survive a motion of no confidence in late March. Instead of calling new elections, the President of the Republic has been working towards forming a new government, invoking his right to propose a Prime Minister. This move, however, has no basis in the constitution, and the Constitutional Court is expected to clarify the matter any day.

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Cameroon’s Fight Against COVID-19: An Ordinary Legal Framework for an Extraordinary Situation

Cameroon has neither resorted to the exceptional measures that its constitution provides for, nor adopted a new law for the occasion, as many other countries have done. The state has instead relied on already existing provisions, applicable in ordinary times to combat the pandemic. This speaks volumes about the “ordinary” powers of the administrative authorities.

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Ecuador – Constitutionalism and Covid-19

When referring to the rule of law and constitutionalism we must be extremely cautious: Ecuador was founded in 1830 after the dissolution of Great Colombia, and in just 190 years has adopted 20 constitutions. The current Ecuadorian Constitution dates from 2008. This means that the nation does not possess a strong constitutional tradition nor a culture of promotion of the rule of law. On the contrary, Ecuador has a long history of institutional breakdowns and coup d’états which were caused by political and economic crisis. However, these were nothing compared with the situation all Ecuadorians are currently facing.

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The Law Can’t Always Fix It

On 14 October, the Venice Commission released an opinion on the scope of the power of the President of Albania to set the dates of elections. In Albania, the President is facing impeachment due to his postponement of the local elections, and the Albanian Assembly’s Speaker requested the Venice Commission to issue its opinion on the President’s actions. While the Commission was clear in its legal conclusions, the reactions of the Albanian public to the report illustrate that a reasoned legal opinion was not suited to calm the ongoing political battles in Albania.

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Ze-Situation: A Constitutional Law Perspective on Ukraine’s Elections and What is Coming Next

On 21 April, 41-year-old actor and comedian Volodymyr Zelenskiy, who entered the political scene only in January 2019, won the second ballot of Ukraine’s presidential election with 73 percent of the national vote. Ukrainians are placing high hopes on their new President to improve the country’s politicial and economic situation. But political games and Ukraine’s constitution will make it difficult for Zelenskiy to bring about the change he was elected for.

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Is the U.S. President Above the Law?

On June 4, President Trump tweeted that the President has the absolute right to issue pardons, even to himself. The President’s claim came close on the heels of the New York Times’s publication of a letter two White House attorneys had sent months earlier to Robert Mueller, the Special Counsel appointed to investigate links between Trump’s election campaign and the Russian government. The lawyers argued that the President’s firing of FBI Director James Comey could not constitute obstruction of justice, because the President is the chief law enforcement officer of the nation, and can fire the FBI Director for any reason at all. Can it really be the case that the President of the United States is above the law?

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Why the Italian President’s Decision was Legitimate

The new Italian government is unlikely to find a majority in Parliament; it will probably be a short-term, neutral caretaker, until the new elections, which may take place as soon as next autumn. The impeachment procedure against the President – should it start at all – will end in nothing, although it might stir the electoral propaganda.

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Is Poland’s President Duda on the Road to Damascus?

Does President Duda’s recent vetoes signal a more permanent change in his fidelities to his political stable and to the Constitution? An opportunity to witness the depth of his conversion arises soon. The untimely death of Professor Morawski, one of the anti-judges appointed to the Constitutional Tribunal (CT) by Duda in December 2015, has created a vacancy in the CT which must be filled soon. The big question is with whom.

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Abusive comparativism: “Pseudo-comparativist” political discourse as a means to legitimizing constitutional change in Turkey

The constitutional amendment process has arguably weakened Turkey’s already-fragile constitutionalist system. This is well known. What is less known and pretty much overlooked is that comparativism and specifically comparative constitutionalism has suffered at the hands of Turkish political elites during the legal and political discussions that preceded the referendum.

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