Threats to the rule of law in Poland were discussed at the session of the European Parliament held in Strasbourg.
Warsaw administration’s view of its human rights and judicial independence have been criticized by the EU for a while. The decision of the Polish Constitutional Court on October 7 that EU law cannot be superior to Polish law also increased the tension.
Speaking at the EP session in Strasbourg, Ursula von der Leyen, head of the European Commission, said that legal, material, and political options were being evaluated to push Poland back.
Ursula von der Leyen said, “There is an option to challenge the Polish Constitutional Court’s decision legally. The other option is to freeze the funds transferred from the EU budget and the pandemic fund. These are European taxpayers’ money. As the EU invests more than ever for a collective post-pandemic recovery, we need to protect the budget from law violations. The third option is to freeze Poland’s voting rights in EU decisions.”
The President of the European Commission said that Poland’s decision poses a direct threat to the integrity of the European legal system.
Morawiecki: Mention of Sanctions is Unacceptable
Making a speech longer than the time allotted for him, Morawiecki said, “I will not allow EU politicians to blackmail Poland.”
German European Minister Michael Roth, who met with his counterparts in Luxembourg today, said that member states had to comply with the promises they made during the negotiations and that Poland would not be an exception in this regard.
Polish Prime Minister Mateusz Morawiecki argued that his country’s place is in the EU but that the EU acquis is superior to national laws only in certain areas.
In his speech, Morawiecki said, “EU powers have clear limits, and we should not remain silent when these limits are exceeded. We say ‘Yes’ to European universalism. We say ‘No’ to Eurocentrism.”
Some experts say that the Polish Constitutional Court’s decision could result in Poland’s future departure from the EU.