Note: I am mostly thinking about Europe and North America and I would like to hear about studies/articles concerning any of these states

In the last years, EU have faced several cases of countries with judicial independence issues and I am wondering if there is a connection between party in power ideology and judicial independence/rule of law issues.

Poland: Main party in power is Law and Justice whose ideology includes Polish nationalism, National conservatism and economic nationalism.

According to this article "there is a clear risk of a serious breach of the rule of law in Poland."

Hungary: Fidesz is the party in power whose ideology includes Hungarian nationalism, National conservatism and economic nationalism.

Judicial independence seems to suffer in Hungary according to this source:

the purpose of the modification is to fast-track judicial appointments for individuals close to the government — even if they have no experience with the judiciary

Romania: According to this article, Romania also has serious issues to ensure judicial independence:

The European Union on Wednesday urged the Romanian parliament to reconsider recent judicial reforms, which critics say weaken judicial independence.

The main party in power are Social-Democrats who have a significant nationalist/conservatism part within their ideology (or at least their political actions show this):

The Social Democrats may be a part of the European Socialists, but on identity politics (especially on nationalism, LGBT, migration and church-state relations) they have been solidly conservatism, catering to the country’s prevailing authoritarian social values.

Question: Is there a correlation between nationalism/conservatism and (the tendency of) lack of judicial independence / rule of law issues?

  • 8
    Of course, the fact that the countries in your examples share a lot of common history (e.g. they became democracies a relatively short time ago) and other social aspects means that the correlation that you observe could be caused by one or several hidden variables. – SJuan76 Apr 5 '18 at 12:32
  • There is likely correlation between nationalism and dislike of judicial independence, but I believe the more pertinent question here is related to the post-soviet nature of these states (including history, demographics, etc.) as opposed to the stated political ideals of their ruling parties – Gramatik Apr 5 '18 at 15:39
  • In many countries of North America and Europe, democracy and rule-of-law/judicial indepence have been in place for a long time, so the conservative position (i.e. protecting tradition) would be to protect democracy and rule of law/judicial independence. In America, democracy/rule-of-law is an important part of American identity, so nationalism in America is very defensive of democracy/rule-of-law. If you have other meanings for nationalism/rule-of-law in mind you'll need to clarify them for your question to make sense. – Readin Jun 11 '18 at 2:02

Your Answer

By clicking “Post Your Answer”, you agree to our terms of service, privacy policy and cookie policy

Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.