A Constitutional Ban on Same-sex Marriage: Romania is About to Entrench its Homophobic Worldview

by Michael Hein, Postdoc Fellow, University of Göttingen, Alexander von Humboldt Chair of Comparative Constitutionalism
Next weekend, on the 6th and 7th of October, 2018, the citizens of Romania will have the final say on an amendment to the Romanian Constitution of 1991. If approved, it will change Art. 48, para. 1, which defines the family as “based on a freely consented marriage by the spouses”.

Read More

Decision of the Swiss on the initiative for the enforcement of the Constitution

by Thomas Fleiner

This is analysis of the decisions of the Swiss sovereign on three constitutional amendments and on a legislative referendum that took place on February 28, 2016. The turnout is usually lower than 40%. This time, however, it was very high with 62% mainly thanks to the initiative of the UDC.

Read More

The Local Dimension of Constitutional Change

by Michèle Finck

In studies of constitutional law in general and constitutional change in particular, the focus often lies on the national level. With the exception of a number of decentralized States, constitutions are national documents, sometimes even playing a unifying role in otherwise diverse countries. Constitutions being national documents, the assumption that constitutional change is a centralized process comes naturally. A number of processes that lead to constitutional change indeed occur on a national scale, such as debates in the context of a national convention or a decision of a national constitutional court.

Read More