The proposed amnesty law registered by the socialist group on November 13 will pass the first major parliamentary debate next Tuesday with the initiative being considered in the plenary session of the Chamber. The first vote on the legal text has an absolute majority of 178 deputies in favor and with the legal endorsement of its processing by the lawyers of the Cortes Generales. The initiative provoked strong opposition from the political right and media, as well as from various sectors of society.
The President of the Government, Pedro Sánchez, knows this, but he relies on the passage of time to reduce this citizen response. supported by power. legislative—eight parliamentary groups—and in the end it is seen as “a matter of the State” which is good for coexistence.
Neither the PSOE nor its allies intend to tweak the text too much in the amendment stage because they are confident that it will be passed without further problems filtering out the visible flaws. appeal to be presented against this rule to the Constitutional Court, the PP and the various courts with summaries open to the accused in the process.
Pedro Sánchez explained to a group of journalists, in celebration of the 45th anniversary of the Constitution, that although he did not include the measure in his electoral program in July, he considered it “something of interest of the State” which is more specific for the PSOE and its coalition Executive. He even defended that it will be good in the future for the PP, for its leader, Alberto Núñez Feijóo, and above all for Catalonia and for Spain, by expecting a formula that at some point must be resolved to resolve the situation of several hundred citizens on foot who have been accused, charged or convicted for their participation in some illegal acts in the independence process and only for some political leaders.
The head of the Executive said that for many months many of those who are currently against this initiative will understand it when they see its consequences, because he believes that the pardons of the independence leaders condemned by the Supreme Court.
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The Government has no doubts about the legality of the measure, even among some of the non-militant ministers who are trained in the legal world. The political negotiators of the project on the socialist side, supported by legal experts, maintain that they polished the explanatory memorandum and the articles of the law to the maximum so that they pass through the filters of more than predictable ones. appeal pending before the Constitutional Court. Court.
The PP threatened at that time the possibility of appealing, even in the first procedures, the qualification and just acceptance of the Congress Board in the discussion of the project. This has not been done for several reasons. The PP considers waiting until the end of the parliamentary process to present such an appeal and in this way will not offer the option of the Constitutional Court to lower the first appeal against only processing the proposed law.
The House lawyers argued in their technical report for the Congressional Committee in favor of processing the bill. There are other initiatives, for example from Vox, more debatable from the constitutional point of view, that the Board agreed to the debate, although they later did not progress.
The PP built one of its first walls to stop the law in the opinion of the legal experts of the Chamber, who in March 2021 signed a note against processing a proposal of the amnesty law registered in the ERC and other groups. separatists like the CUP. The former secretary general of the Congress and senior lawyer, Carlos Gutiérrez, opposes the authorization of its debate because he considers the text “quietly unconstitutional”, which is one of the rare reasons to prevent any initiative from being discussed in the Chamber. Gutiérrez, who has been in office for 10 years, asked to be relieved after 23-J and the new progressive majority found a replacement in another lawyer, Fernando Galindo, who met the requirements for position, but a senior official of the previous Executive. The PP wanted to challenge him for the past, but the initiative did not develop.
When the PSOE’s proposal, approved by the Junts and ERC and supported by other parliamentary allies, came to the table to be qualified, Galindo chose to leave the room to not participate, but three other lawyers from fifty or more still remained in the meeting. the body of Congress that endorsed the legality of the processing of the project. The PP later insisted on demanding, even in writing, that the report of the experts, which arrived unsigned, be given to someone and Galindo accepted that responsibility.
The lawyers’ report developed an extensive chapter on the legal precedents of amnesty. Neither its prohibition nor its authorization can be found in the articles of the 1978 Constitution. But lawyers pointed out that the Constitutional Court did not declare illegal, and it could have, the 1977 amnesty law.
The progressive majority used in its favor the extensive work prepared by the pardon in Spain, by Congressional lawyer Jorge Villarino Marzo. The expert asked: “What will happen with the amnesty?” And the answer is: “It is a formula that is used on the basis of very rare cases of sudden change of a political regime or the adoption of new legislation that represents a 180-degree turn in relation to previously defined crimes.” “It is also necessary to point out,” he added, “that there is no obstacle in the constitution to grant it. Of course, it must be expressed in the form of a law, the result of a decision of the Cortes Generales as representatives of the sovereigns people, in a framework that is completely unique, with a great consensus and with strict respect for constitutional principles, such as the principle of equality and proportionality.” The amnesty law of 2023 began its passage in the Cortes this Tuesday, it is unique and designed with the purpose of matching the 1978 Constitution, but it did not proceed or even come close to a “great consensus.”
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