Source: European Parliament
Last July, the Commission launched an infringement procedure against Poland challenging the legality of a number of provisions establishing a retirement age for judges and prosecutors which differed for men and women. In the absence of convincing explanations by the Polish Government, the Commission brought action before the Court of Justice of the European Union. The latter ruled a few weeks ago that those provisions are contrary to EU law so that they are therefore contrary to the rule of law in Poland.
The Commission is failing to take effective steps to ensure the respect of the rule of law despite having declared (1) upon learning of the judgment that it ‘takes note’ of it and that it stands ‘ready to support the Polish Government’ — a wilful infringer — ‘and to continue discussions on the resolution of all other outstanding issues related to the rule of law in Poland’.
The Polish Government is again challenging the EU by announcing that it will not comply with the ECJ ruling. The democratic rule of law is under attack because the values enshrined in the Treaties and the Charter of Fundamental Rights are not shared by the current Government.
Can the Commission be the guardian of the Treaties when its aim is to continue to support the infringing Government?