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I·CONnect

Blog of the International Journal of Constitutional Law and ConstitutionMaking.org
Home 2011 January
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New report on Human Dignity

We have a new report on the protection of human dignity in national constitutional texts, available in the “Reports” section of the website under the “Rights” tab, or directly here. From what we can tell, the concept first appeared in the constitutions of Finland and Estonia in 1919 and spread rapidly after its adoption as

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Published on January 31, 2011
Author:          Filed under: dignity, hp, Tom Ginsburg
 
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French Court Affirms Ban on Gay Marriage

Yesterday, the French Constitutional Council upheld a law prohibiting gay marriage. The ruling appears to be as much about the institutional relationship between courts and legislatures in France as it is about marriage itself. In its short decision, the Constitutional Council made two points of note. First, the bundle of family rights preserved in the

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Published on January 29, 2011
Author:          Filed under: France, gay marriage, hp, Richard Albert
 
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Further Changes Proposed to the Turkish Constitutional Court

Late last year, in September 2010, Turkish voters approved by 58% of the vote a set of constitutional amendments, which included a court-packing plan that expanded the size of the Turkish Constitutional Court from eleven to seventeen seats (which I discussed here). Further changes are now on the horizon for the Constitutional Court. Earlier this

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Published on January 27, 2011
Author:          Filed under: constitutional amendment, hp, Turkey
 
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Independent Institutions in Iraq

The Iraq Federal Supreme Court (FSC), following a petition by Prime Minister Maliki’s office, has just ruled that independent commissions such as the Independent High Electoral Commission (IHEC) and the Central Bank of Iraq are to be attached to the executive branch. The ruling would seem to contradict the 2005 Constitution’s Chapter on Independent Commissions,

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Published on January 26, 2011
Author:          Filed under: constitutional amendment, courts, hp, iraq, Jason Gluck
 
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Tunisia and constitutional transition

The situation in Tunisia is perhaps too fluid to speculate on, but if the current situation stabilizes, it is an interesting example of constitutional compliance under a (potentially collapsing) authoritarian regime. Article 57 of the 1959 Constitution, as amended, reads: “In case the Presidency of the Republic becomes vacant on account of death, resignation, or

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Published on January 26, 2011
Author:          Filed under: authoritarianism, hp, Tunisia
 
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Three Modalities of Comparison: Arizona’s Exceptionalism?

For comparativists, South Africa is a gold mine. It offers comparative law scholars a rich repository of judgments that often develop in exquisite detail instructive comparisons between and among states. Of course, this is not a matter of happenstance. South Africa’s constitutional text actually commands courts to compare in some instances and also invites courts

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Published on January 22, 2011
Author:          Filed under: Arizona, constitutional amendment, hp, Richard Albert, south africa
 
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Iowa Supreme Court Crisis?

In November, the people of the State of Iowa voted not to retain three of their seven Supreme Court Justices. Nothing like this had ever happened before. The result received national and international attention, given the real dangers that the vote poses to separation of powers and an independent judiciary. The vote was largely caused

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Published on January 15, 2011
Author:          Filed under: hp, Mark Kende
 
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Amending the Unamendable Constitutional Clauses in Honduras?

The Honduran congress has passed, by the required supermajority, a reform to constitutional Article 5 that refers to the requisites to call for a plebiscite or a referendum as well as to the scope of issues that can be decided using those mechanisms of direct democracy. In order to successfully amend Article 5, however, a

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Published on January 14, 2011
Author:          Filed under: constitutional review, honduras, hp, Julio Rios-Figueroa, Latin America
 
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A Comparativist Joins the German Constitutional Court

The Federal Constitutional Court of Germany will welcome a new judge in 2011: Prof. Dr. Susanna Baer, an enthusiastic comparativist whose work probes a number of fields including human rights, gender equality, law & religion, and legal theory. Baer, who most recently held a professorship at the Humboldt University Berlin, has written a number of

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Published on January 9, 2011
Author:          Filed under: Federal Constitutional Court of Germany, Germany, hp, Richard Albert
 
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The Canadian angle to the Ugandan High Court’s ruling

Follow-up on Tom’s very timely coverage of the Ugandan High Court decision forbidding a tabloid newspaper from publishing the names and pictures of suspected homosexuals (and urging that they be killed). The CBC reports on the Canadian angle to this story: the Ugandan decision cited with approval a 2002 Saskatchewan Court of Queen’s Bench decision

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Published on January 6, 2011
Author:          Filed under: Canada, David Law, gay rights, hp, Uganda