The European Commission has formally notified Poland that it is violating accepted norms with changes it has made to its highest court. If Poland fails to fall into line, it may face a variety of sanctions from Brussels.
The following appearance on a German television program by a Polish journalist named Aleksandra Rybińska was first aired last February. It provides some additional background on the current confrontation between Poland and the Imperial Center.
Many thanks to Egri Nök for the translation, and to Vlad Tepes for the subtitling:
Below is a BBC article on the same topic:
Poland constitution: EU warns over threat to rule of law
The European Union has issued a formal warning to Poland for threatening the rule of law — one of the founding principles of the EU.
Critics of the right-wing Polish government have been angry at changes it has made to the country’s top court, leaving it, they say, in effect unable to review and veto legislation.
The warning from the European Commission could lead to Poland being stripped of its EU voting rights.
Poland has two weeks to respond.
The EU has been having inconclusive talks with the Polish government since it announced a preliminary assessment of the new laws in January.
The Commission, the EU’s executive arm, can press a member state to change any measure considered a “systemic threat” to fundamental EU values.
Commissioner Frans Timmermans said political issues in Poland were the business of politicians in Poland.
You have to ask yourself: Did Poland sleepwalk into this nightmare, the same way the Brits did? Or did cynical and corrupt Polish politicians knowingly sell their country to Brussels for a mess of pottage?
|00:00||The rule of law action — well, we were not able to prevent it. It has been set in motion.|
|00:05||I see in it less a concern for the Polish democracy,|
|00:11||than an attempt of the European Commission to appropriate competencies|
|00:16||that they are not entitled to, according to European treaties.|
|00:20||We have been observing this for quite some years, and the European commission repeatedly tries,|
|00:24||whenever there are occasions — such as Hungary, where it did not work out well —|
|00:29||there, the European Commission interposed later — it is always the attempt to expand competencies.|
|00:34||The rule of law action did not exist back then, it was only created in 2014.|
|00:38||Right, it exists now, and we hear from Mr. Oettinger|
|00:41||that the Polish government should submit the Polish bills to the European Commission,|
|00:46||so that the European Commission can assess them. This means a non elected commission,|
|00:50||an appointed commission, that has not been democratically elected,|
|00:54||will assess bills that a democratically elected parliament —|
|00:57||That is not a contradiction. — Anyway, when Poland joined the European Union —|
|01:01||Then don’t sign the treaties.|
|01:04||These are the European treaties, and you have to accept that, our neighbours.|
|01:09||But the rule of law action — Mrs. Rybinska, you gladly take €12.4 billion.|
|01:14||Poland is the greatest net recipient. You get a lot of money from the EU.|
|01:18||And I do not begrudge you that. You need it.|
|01:21||But then you cannot accept the positive things, but not the negative things.|
|01:25||I know that argument. Most of the time, it comes up in the refugee question.|
|01:30||I put it forward now already, but I will gladly bring it up later again.|
|01:33||As far as I can remember, there were no such conditions tied to these EU subsidies,|
|01:39||when it was decided in the treaties. Of course you are free to renegotiate the treaties.|
|01:44||I worry then that the European Union will disintegrate. But sure, the way is clear.