Rule of Law: “a good cause wielded as a tool of extra-treaty, unlawful action”, says ECR Co-Chair

The European Parliament has adopted a resolution designed to take the Commission to the Court of Justice of the EU (CJEU), should it fail to use the mechanism that links the payment of EU funds to member states' respect for the rule of law.

Giving his opinion, ECR Co-Chairman Prof Ryszard Legutko stated that detailed guidelines for the application of the conditionality regulation must first be developed. Legutko said that until those guidelines are finalised, the Commission cannot propose measures under the new regulation.

Prof Legutko continues:

“Of course, it is vital to protect the budget from irregularities, and we are not questioning this. However, in this parliament’s resolution, we are dealing with the standard approach of the federalist majority. In other words, we are witnessing a good cause being used as a tool of extra-treaty, to carry out an unlawful action.

“We support all measures to protect the Union’s budget from acts of fraud, corruption and conflicts of interest. However, all new regulations must comply with EU law. They must not be designed to circumvent existing treaty mechanisms.

“A vague concept of the rule of law would be a miraculous remedy for all budgetary problems that one could imagine. But, unfortunately, this resolution amounts to a method of dictation and control against the governments that break away from the federalist mainstream.”

In December 2020, the ECR Group tabled an own resolution that referred to the Treaties and the agreement reached by the EUCO about how best to apply the regulation through detailed guidelines. There are also ongoing proceedings before the Court of Justice to annul the Regulation in its entirety.

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