Nur für Deutsche?...

Marian Miszalski

The German Constitutional Tribunal passed an odd ruling that ‘the Treaty of Lisbon is compatible with the German constitution but its implementation requires changing the German law so that the German Parliament could every time give its consent to implement the EU law in the territory of Germany.’ This sentence means that the ‘supranational’ law determined by virtue of the Treaty of Lisbon by the EU institutions needs to be approved in every case by the German Parliament to be binding in the territory of Germany. Therefore, it means that the Germans do not submit to the EU law without the consent of their Parliament; they preserve full state sovereignty! Thus Germany would be an exception of the new European Union: it would preserve full state sovereignty whereas other member states would have to give it up. Therefore, this verdict essentially changes the conditions of the validity of the Treaty of Lisbon. The German authorities have already announced that the session of the Bundestag concerning this matter would be held on 27 August 2009. Because of the ruling of the Constitutional Tribunal one can expect an increasing propaganda pressure on Poland to incline Poland’s President to ratify the Treaty of Lisbon as quickly as possible; the pressure will refer only to the first part of the verdict of the German Tribunal. However, if one considers the whole ruling it constitutes an extremely important argument to reject the Treaty of Lisbon by the President and an urgent need to renegotiate the Treaty of Lisbon so that Poland would have the possibility to apply the precedential ‘German variation’, which makes the validity of each EU law conditional on the consent of the national Parliament. In fact, nothing gets in the way for the Polish Parliament to accept the same principle as urgently as the German Parliament. Since – which is worth stressing – the ruling of the German Constitutional Tribunal ‘de iure’ questioned the principle of ‘divided sovereignty’, included in the Treaty of Lisbon, at least concerning Germany.
Considering not only the reparations concerning one third of Poland’s territory demanded by the Germans but also the possible development of relationships in Europe the ratification of the Treaty of Lisbon by President Lech Kaczynski would mean our consent to the scandalous, and dangerous in its consequences, inequality. One should also firmly stress that the ‘competitive bill’ agreed upon between President Kaczynski and Prime Minister Tusk on the Hel Peninsula (by the way, the bill has not been defined yet…) does not give Poland what the ruling of the German Tribunal gives to Germany (including the obligation to ‘strengthen’ the Bundestag): to preserve state sovereignty in spite of the external observation of ‘the divided sovereignty’ between the EU and member state, included in the Treaty of Lisbon. The exception ‘nur für Deutsche’? Unacceptable! It seems that the German move is a carefully calculated political manoeuvre: the August decision of the Bundestag does not leave much time for Poland’s reaction (the second referendum in Ireland is going to be held in October). Following the German move one can expect launching an intensified propaganda that will exert pressure on Poland immediately after the possible positive result of the referendum in Ireland, the pressure to force the Polish President to ratify the Lisbon Treaty without considering the radically new legal situation and the factual political situation, which has already been created by the ruling of the German Tribunal and which the Bundestag will create in August.

"Niedziela" 28/2009

Editor: Tygodnik Katolicki "Niedziela", ul. 3 Maja 12, 42-200 Czestochowa, Polska
Editor-in-chief: Fr Jaroslaw Grabowski • E-mail: