A Collaboration with University of Pittsburgh   

Romania court approves vote to suspend president

The Constitutional Court of Romania [official website, in Romanian] on Monday approved the Parliamentary vote to suspend President Traian Basescu [official website, in Romania] and replace him with a member of the centre-left coalition. Last Friday the Romanian Parliament [official website] voted [JURIST report] 356-114 for impeachment on the grounds that Basescu overstepped his authority by interfering in judicial and legislative affairs. Controversy has been brewing since Prime Minister Victor Ponta [BBC profile], a member of the centre-left coalition, came to power. The suspension of Basescu and firing of other lawmakers has led to growing international concern. The US State Department [official website] said the recent events may pose a threat to democracy [Reuters report] by interfering with checks and balances as well as the legitimacy of the courts. The upheld vote means Basescu will be suspended [AFP report] until the public votes in a referendum currently scheduled for July 29.

Last week, the Constitutional Court also accused Ponta of overstepping his authority [JURIST report] by attempting to seize control over the judiciary system. The court announced that it has alerted the European authorities [Reuters report] of the situation. Also last week Ponta ignored a decision by the court finding Basescu should be the representative of the country at the European Council [official website] meeting in Brussels. In 2009 the Constitutional Court declared incumbent president Basescu winner of the country's disputed presidential election [JURIST report]. Basescu, who has been president of Romania since 2004, has survived impeachment once before. In 2007 Basescu was reinstated after the high court certified the results of a referendum in which 74 percent of voters rejected Basescu's impeachment [JURIST report].

Support JURIST

We rely on our readers to keep JURIST running

 Donate now!

About Paper Chase

Paper Chase is JURIST's real-time legal news service, powered by a team of 30 law student reporters and editors led by law professor Bernard Hibbitts at the University of Pittsburgh School of Law. As an educational service, Paper Chase is dedicated to presenting important legal news and materials rapidly, objectively and intelligibly in an accessible format.

© Copyright JURIST Legal News and Research Services, Inc., 2013.