Blog of the International Journal of Constitutional Law

What’s New in Comparative Public Law

Rohan Alva, Jindal Global Law School

In this new weekly feature, I-CONnect publishes a curated reading list of developments in comparative public law. “Developments” may include a selection of links to news, high court decisions, new or recent scholarly books and articles, and blog posts from around the comparative public law blogosphere.

To submit relevant developments for our weekly feature on “What’s New in Comparative Public Law,” please email

Development in Constitutional Courts

1. The Canadian Supreme Court has decided to revisit its 1993 decision declining to recognize physician-aided suicide as constitutional.
2. The Italian Constitutional Court has handed down a judgment identifying the grounds on which it found the 2005 Italian electoral laws unconstitutional. This judgment is in pursuance of its ruling handed down in December 2013, when it had ruled that part of the electoral laws violated the constitution.
3. Hery Rajaonarimampianina, who has previously served as the finance minister of Madagascar, has been declared by Madagascar’s Electoral Court as the nation’s president. The court ruled that he received 53.5 % of the votes.
4. The Constitutional Court of Romania has found unconstitutional  a proposed law which seeks to provide immunity to elected representatives from criminal action in cases involving corruption.
5. The Pennsylvania Commonwealth Court invalidated Pennsylvania’s Voter ID laws, considering the law to not be in service of free elections.

New Scholarship

1. Stephen Gardbaum, Proportionality and Democratic Constitutionalism (Grant Huscroft, Bradley Miller, Grégoire Webber eds., Proportionality and the Rule of Law: Rights, Justifications, Reasoning, Cambridge University Press, 2014) (advancing a novel framework through which the merits of proportionality could be better appreciated and positing that proportionality plays an important role in strengthening democracy)
2. Tom Ginsburg, Nick Foti, Daniel Rockmore, “We the Peoples”: The Global Origins of Constitutional Preambles, George Washington International Law Review (forthcoming) (examining the factors which guide the language of the preambles of constitutions, and seeking to understand how preambulatory statements in constitutions might be influenced by each other)
3. Pier Giuseppe Monateri (ed.), Methods of Comparative Law (Edward Elgar Publishing, 2012) (collecting papers in which contributors investigate the normative questions that arise in the use of comparative law, with a focus on methodological approaches to comparative law, a theoretical analysis of comparative law; and, and the interaction of economics and comparative law)
4. Michael J. Klarman, Windsor and Brown: Marriage Equality and Racial Equality 127 Harvard Law Review 127 (2013) (comparing the U.S. Supreme Court’s recent decisions on same-sex marriage with the decision in Brown v. Board of Education, and analysing the impact of transformed socio-political conceptions on constitutional decision-making)
5. Shubhankar Dam, Presidential Legislation in India (Cambridge University Press, 2013) (evaluating the power of the president to issue ordinances without needing to consult the Indian Parliament and examining some of the pitfalls in the judicial review of ordinances)

In the News

1. Egyptians have, by a huge majority, accepted the new constitution. The result of the referendum on the constitution indicates that 98.1% of the votes were in support of the new constitution.
2. Tunisia’s National Constituent Assembly is on the cusp of passing the nation’s constitution, which guarantees a set of “universal freedoms and rights” and requires the equal representation of women in “elected bodies.”
3. The President of Uganda is unwilling to sign into law a bill which aims to enhance the punishment that can be accorded to homosexuals in Uganda.
4. Amnesty International has strongly criticized the high rate of executions which have taken place in Iran, in 2014. According to Amnesty, Iran has executed forty people thus far, with thirty three executions having taken place in the last week. Al Jazeera reports that in the latter half of 2013, over three hundred people had been executed in Iran.
5. Aung San Suu Kyi concluded her tour of Northwest Myanmar, during which she called for progressive changes to Myanmar’s Constitution.

Elsewhere on Blogs

1. Nick Barber, After the Vote, UK Constitutional Law Group
2. Gautam Bhatia, Reservations, Equality and the Constitution-I: Origins, Indian Constitutional Law and Philosophy
3. Katie OByrne and Radhika Withana, Over to you, Parliament- The significance of the Australian High Court’s judgment on same-sex marriage, Oxford Human Rights Hub
4. Jesse Wegman, On Abortion-Free Speech Case, Justices Pull Out Tape Measure, Taking Note
5. Natasa Mavronicola, Mavronicola on State immunity and torture: the case of Jones v UK, Human Rights in Ireland


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