Marine Le Pen’s program would apply in “violation of the Constitution” | The HuffPost – The HuffPost

via Associated PressMarine Le Pen photographed at a press conference on Wednesday April 13 in Paris (illustration)POLITICS – This is the essence of disruptive projects: spectacular promises that come up against certain realities that go beyond the words of the podium. On this subject, Marine Le Pen’s program could serve as a textbook case. Because the project it carries includes a number of measures that would smash against the foundation of our democratic functioning: the Constitution. And in particular the cornerstone of his project: national preference. While the legal feasibility of Marine Le Pen’s program is debated, The HuffPost asked Jean-Philippe Derosier, constitutional expert and professor of public law at the University of Lille, to sift through the proposals of the far-right candidate. And for this specialist, Marine Le Pen’s program cannot be carried out without a “violation of the Constitution”, whether in substance or in form. Explanations. A project contrary to the principle of equality First of all, a glance at the Constitution. In its preamble, it is written that “the French people solemnly proclaim their attachment to the Rights of Man and to the principles of national sovereignty as they were defined by the Declaration of 1789, confirmed and supplemented by the preamble of the Constitution of 1946”. A principle enshrined in the first article of the text, which “ensures the equality before the law of all citizens without distinction of origin, race or religion”. However, Marine Le Pen proposes in her program to include in the Constitution the “national priority” or even a provision prohibiting “the installation of a number of foreigners” which would be “likely to modify the composition and the identity of the French people”. This is in contradiction with the “constitutionality block” which enshrines the “essential principles” mentioned above. “Currently, the Constitution guarantees the principle of equality. The national priority is a pure and simple rupture of this principle. In theory, you can put everything in the text, but to do so, it must comply with the rules. But there, it goes completely against the principles of the text, it would be done in total confrontation with the spirit of the Constitution”, observes Jean-Philippe Derosier, adding that this measure also comes into contradiction “with the European rules to which France subscribed in the name of the Constitution”. According to the professor of public law, such a measure “would create the need to leave the European Union”. The same goes for the priority of national law over European law, which it also wishes to establish. Aware of the difficulty posed by the introduction of discrimination in a text which guarantees the main principles of equality and fraternity, Marine Le Pen intends to settle this question by a referendum which would modify the Constitution. And there too, there is (a lot) to complain about. A “constitutional coup d’etat” To ensure that she can include the matrix of her program in the Constitution, Marine Le Pen intends to summon the people, via a referendum bill. A method, she believes, that would allow her to get rid of the legal constraints facing her project. To revise the Constitution, the far-right candidate can use the procedure provided for in article 89. Problem, this implies that the National Assembly and the Senate approve, and in strictly identical terms, the bill that would like to submit to a referendum. A legislative path which requires having a majority in the Assembly (which is not yet acquired) but, above all, that the Senate (where the Republicans are in the majority) agrees to modify the Constitution according to its terms. Which is unlikely, and Marine Le Pen is aware of it. To circumvent the Parliament, the candidate RN intends to rely on article 11 of the Constitution, which makes it possible to organize a referendum. To support her demonstration, Marine Le Pen cites the precedent of General De Gaulle and his referendum of 1962, on the subject of the presidential election by universal suffrage. “Since that date, it has been assumed that the Constitution could be modified by referendum directly,” she says. “If she only has very vague skills in constitutional law, Marine Le Pen has at least a good memory”, ironically Jean-Philippe Derosier, before pointing out the differences between the precedent of 1962 and the current context. “First, the Constitution was only three years old, just like the Constitutional Council. Moreover, all the jurists of the time had denounced a violation of constitutional law. Finally, the law has evolved since that date”, continues the constitutionalist, before dismantling the argument of the candidate RN. According to her, the Elders have “not the ability to watch the content of a referendum” but only have to ensure that the ballot is held properly. Thus, it could very well propose all these revisions in this way, without the Constitutional Council being able to act. Error. “The Council must examine the preparatory acts for a referendum. And among these, there is the decree calling the ballot and the bill that she wishes to submit. If the content of these acts is contrary to the Constitution and does not fall within the scope of Article 11, he will oppose them”, explains Jean-Philippe Derosier, who is alarmed at the lightness with which Marine Le Pen addresses these fundamental questions. “In reality, there is very little chance of this happening. What is striking is the assumption of wanting to violate the Constitution, which leads me to qualify his project as a ‘constitutional coup’”, points out the specialist. While Marine Le Pen has the obligation to modify the Constitution to apply her program, her inability to do so in the terms she wants could lead her, in the event of an election on April 24, to political paralysis. See also on The HuffPost: A photo of Poutine and Le Pen brandished by an activist in the middle of a press conference

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