Feijóo considers control of the Constitutional Court lost and clings to the blockade of the Judiciary

The PP gives up the conservative majority in the Constitutional Court. The coalition government has circumvented the blockade to which it submits the party of Alberto Núñez Feijóo to the General Council of the Judiciary (CGPJ) with a modification of the law that the first opposition party considers unconstitutional. The PP announced at the beginning of August an appeal before the court of guarantees, but the calendar advances without it being presented and in the party they limit themselves to informing that "it is being prepared". The appointment of the four new magistrates is imminent and seems unavoidable. The leadership of the party has assumed its defeat in this battle since, although they present the appeal, and assure that they will do so, they assume that the answer could never arrive before the appointments become effective.

The Government and the CGPJ plan to appoint directly in the coming days the people who will relieve the four Constitutional magistrates whose mandate expired last June. The Executive of PSOE and United We Can will elect two. And the governing body of the judges plans to hold an extraordinary plenary session on September 8 to debate its proposal. The will of the president, Carlos Lesmes, and of a majority of members, is to make these appointments before next September 13, when the deadline expires, but the talks between the conservative and progressive sectors are still open.

The sources consulted by elDiario.es assure that there is no consensus at the moment on the candidates to be appointed, who will foreseeably come from the Supreme Court and will respond to the two sensitivities present in the body, one conservative and the other progressive. Those elected need to obtain the support of 12 of the 19 members of the body. Last July, part of the conservative wing revolted against this reform with which the PSOE intends to unclog the renewal of the Constitutional. Any delay in his appointment would disrupt the Government's plans, where they have stated that they want to wait for the CGPJ to make their two appointments.

In any case, when the replacement takes place, the conservative majority that has dominated the court of guarantees in the last decade will decline. It is the goal pursued by the government coalition when it agreed last fall with the PP of Pablo Casado the renewal of the third that corresponded to Congress and Senate, despite having to go through the ring to vote for Enrique Arnaldo and Concepción Espejel. The parliamentary allies of the Executive criticized the move, but it was also in that negotiation when the Government and the main opposition party agreed to update different constitutional bodies and a path to unlock the renewal of the CGPJ, in office since 2018.

The agreement was not fully substantiated in the last stretch of 2021. And at the start of 2022, a coup by the PP barons to nip the war between Casado and Ayuso in the bud ended with their leader resigning and the enthronement of Feijóo . The Galician leader assumed command of the PP with the promise of changing the policies of his predecessors and reaching agreements with the government led by Pedro Sánchez.

In their first meeting, in Moncloa, they only agreed on one thing: "resume talks" about the CGPJ. It was April, but four months later the renewal of the Judiciary is more blocked than ever. To the point that the leak of the agreement 2021 dealsigned by the Minister of the Presidency, Félix Bolaños, and the then General Secretary of the PP, Teodoro García Egea, led the Feijóo leadership to first say that they did not know of said document so, caught in the lie, opt out of your content. For Feijóo, the commitments of the Casado PP do not concern his leadership.

The agreed text pointed towards a normalization of relations between State institutions: renew the pending bodies (Ombudsman, Court of Accounts, etc.), reverse in part the legal reform that prevents the CGPJ in office from making appointments, with the aim to unblock the Constitutional (what Feijóo's PP now rejects) to, later, undertake the complete renovation of the government of the judges.

Since April, the PP has considered the talks broken and resumed several times, until the final lockdown. Feijóo's response has been to propose a clean slate as a bargaining chip, with a profound legal reform that goes beyond the system of election of the members of the Judiciary and that would affect other levels, including jurisdictional

Feijóo considers it a "minimum proposal" that, in addition to imposing without legal coverage that the renewal of the CGPJ be done according to new criteria (which would take about six months to set, according to the document made public in July by the PP, which would take the renewal to 2023), proposes raising the majority with which the governing body of the judges elects "the senior positions of the judicial career" to "three-fifths", which would allow the members appointed by the PP block any appointment.

Feijóo's "minimum proposal" also aimed at reforming the figure of the state attorney general, the system of access to the judiciary or leaving out the autonomous legislative assemblies in the election of the so-called "autonomic magistrate". An idea this last copied to the Government of Isabel Díaz Ayuso.

The leadership of the PP has confirmed that it has no intention of moving from its "minimum proposal", which de facto will prevent the renewal of the CGPJ since the participation of the PP deputies and senators is essential. Only when Feijóo wants can full compliance with the Constitution be restored.

The theme is not liked on the main floor of the building located at number 13 on Calle de Génova in Madrid. The leader of the PP considers that it is something that does not interest the Spanish, who are more concerned about the rise in prices and the escalation of the Euribor. But he fears that, in the long run, the absence of an agreement with the government, even on something mandated by the Constitution, could make a dent in the image of moderate and statesman that he wants to give. The decision swings between assuming the cost among the most radical right of agreeing with the sanchismo and Podemos or reaching the 2023 electoral cycle in total confrontation. Everything will depend on the strategy determined in Genoa.

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