Framing the Court: Political Reactions to the Ruling on the Declaration of Sovereignty of the Catalan Parliament

Abstract

This article analyses the reactions by political actors to the ruling of the Spanish Constitutional Court on the Declaration of Sovereignty of the Catalan parliament. It is suggested that political framings of the ruling can be classified into the legalist, attitudinal and institutional academic models of judicial behaviour. As will be shown, these models have a normative dimension, with implications for the ideal of the rule of law. These implications are skilfully captured and exploited by political actors as part of a wider battle for the framing of the ruling. The rule of law thus becomes politicised as a result of the tension around the judicialisation of the so-called Catalan ‘sovereignist process’.

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Notes

  1. 1.

    Moreno (2002), Martinez-Herrera (2002, p. 421, at p. 428).

  2. 2.

    Hopkin (2009, p. 179, at p. 191).

  3. 3.

    Aja and Colino (2014, p. 444, at p. 445).

  4. 4.

    Agranoff and Ramos Gallarín (1997, p. 1), Sala (2014, p. 109).

  5. 5.

    Moreno (1997, p. 65, at p. 70).

  6. 6.

    Shapiro (2002, p. 148, at p. 148).

  7. 7.

    For a discussion on constitutional democracy and the legitimacy of a constitutional review of legislation, see, inter alia, Rosenfeld (2001, p. 1307), Tremblay (2003, p. 525), Kyritsis (2012, p. 297), Bassok and Dotan (2013, p. 13).

  8. 8.

    On this ruling, see, inter alia, Viver Pi-Sunyer (2011, p. 363), Ferret Jacas (2011, p. 44).

  9. 9.

    Inter alia, Redher (2007); Dyevre (2010, p. 297). See also Bailey and Maltzman (2011), Spaeth (2010, p. 752), Lax (2011, p. 131), Landau (2005, p. 687), Gillman and Clayton (1999).

  10. 10.

    Alter (1998, p. 227, at p. 230).

  11. 11.

    Segal and Spaeth (2002, p. 86).

  12. 12.

    As stated by Clayton, ‘the legalist model […] does not rely upon the simplistic, mechanical, apolitical jurisprudence’ that attitudinalists suggest. Clayton (1999, p. 15, at p. 27).

  13. 13.

    Alter (1998, p. 233).

  14. 14.

    Segal and Spaeth (2002, p. 86).

  15. 15.

    Dyevre (2010, at pp. 297–300).

  16. 16.

    Dyevre (2010), Redher (2007).

  17. 17.

    Dyevre (2010, p. 302).

  18. 18.

    Baird and Gangl (2006, p. 597, at p. 597).

  19. 19.

    Nicholson and Howard (2003, p. 676, at p. 677).

  20. 20.

    Chong and Druckman (2007, p. 103, at p. 104).

  21. 21.

    Nelson and Kinder (1996, p. 1055, at p. 1055).

  22. 22.

    Lars Blichner and Anders Molander, What Is Juridification?, ARENA Working Papers. https://www.sv.uio.no/arena/english/research/publications/arena-publications/workingpapers/working-papers2005/wp05_14.pdf. March 2005. Accessed 15 September 2014.

  23. 23.

    See, inter alia, Wedeking (2010, p. 617), Nicholson and Howard (2003), Bogoch and Holzman-Gazit (2008, p. 53).

  24. 24.

    Martí (2013, p. 507, at p. 513).

  25. 25.

    ‘El Parlament de Catalunya aprueba la declaración de soberanía de CiU y ERC’. La Vanguardia (digital edition). 23 January 2013.

  26. 26.

    See Alter (1998), Segal and Spaeth (2002).

  27. 27.

    María Fabra, La tendencia en el Constitucional es mayor a la unidad que a la autonomía. El País (digital edition). 17 March 2014.

  28. 28.

    Dyevre (2010).

  29. 29.

    Nati Villanueva, Un nuevo TC conservador por 7 a 5. ABC (digital edition), 7 June 2013. María Jesús Cañizares, Fracasa la estrategia catalana de recusar a tres magistrados del TC. ABC, 26 March 2014.

  30. 30.

    Luís Garcia, Las ‘perlas’ sobre Catalunya de los magistrados conservadores del TC que quería recusar el Parlament. La Vanguardia (digital edition), 26 March 2014.

  31. 31.

    Luís Garcia, Las ‘perlas’ sobre Catalunya de los magistrados conservadores del TC que quería recusar el Parlament. La Vanguardia (digital edition), 26 March 2014.

  32. 32.

    Luís Garcia, Las ‘perlas’ sobre Catalunya de los magistrados conservadores del TC que quería recusar el Parlament. La Vanguardia (digital edition), 26 March 2014.

  33. 33.

    María Jesús Cañizares, Fracasa la estrategia catalana de recusar a tres magistrados del TC. ABC, 26 March 2014.

  34. 34.

    Redher (2007).

  35. 35.

    Fernando Garea, Rajoy tiene listo el vuelco de la mayoría en el Tribunal Constitucional. El País (digital edition), 11 March 2013.

  36. 36.

    Fernando Garea, Rajoy tiene listo el vuelco de la mayoría en el Tribunal Constitucional. El País (digital edition), 11 March 2013.

  37. 37.

    Fernando Garea, Rajoy tiene listo el vuelco de la mayoría en el Tribunal Constitucional. El País (digital edition), 11 March 2013.

  38. 38.

    Fernando Garea, Rajoy tiene listo el vuelco de la mayoría en el Tribunal Constitucional. El País (digital edition), 11 March 2013.

  39. 39.

    José María Brunet, El fallo del TC sobre la declaración soberanista se discutió en Santo Domingo. La Vanguardia (digital edition), 27 March 2014.

  40. 40.

    ACN/Barcelona, CiU no le da ‘ninguna credibilidad’ a las resoluciones de un TC donde hay ‘agitadores de la catalanofobia’. El Periódico (digital edition). 25 March 2014.

  41. 41.

    Europa Press, ERC: ‘La hoja de ruta de la consultationa no debe moverse ni un milímetro’. La Vanguardia (digital edition), 25 March 2014.

  42. 42.

    Josep Gisbert and Iñaki Ellakuría, El Govern considera que el tribunal avala la aspiración de la consultationa. La Vanguardia, 26 March 2014.

  43. 43.

    ACN/Barcelona, La CUP asegura que ‘el ejercicio de la soberanía no es analizable jurídicamente’. La Vanguardia (digital edition), 25 March 2014.

  44. 44.

    Diari de Sessions del Parlament de Catalunya, Sèrie P—Núm. 54. 26 March 2014, p. 21.

  45. 45.

    Diari de Sessions del Parlament de Catalunya, Sèrie P—Núm. 54. 26 March 2014, p. 22.

  46. 46.

    Jordi Barbeta, El Govern utilizará argumentos del TC en defensa de la consultationa. La Vanguardia. 28 March 2014.

  47. 47.

    José Manuel Romero and Vera Gutierrez, Líneas rojas en Cataluña. El País. 30 March 2014.

  48. 48.

    ACN/Barcelona, ICV-EUiA: ‘12 señores de un tribunal de Madrid no nos harán desistir del objetivo de poder votar’. La Vanguardia (digital edition), 25 March 2014.

  49. 49.

    Diari de Sessions del Parlament de Catalunya, Sèrie P—Núm. 54. 26 March 2014, p. 20.

  50. 50.

    Diari de Sessions del Parlament de Catalunya, Sèrie P—Núm. 54. 26 March 2014, p. 21.

  51. 51.

    Alex Gubern, CiU llama ‘agitador’ al TC y habla de ‘catalanofobia’. ABC. 26 March 2014.

  52. 52.

    Jordi Barbeta, El Govern utilizará argumentos del TC en defensa de la consultationa. La Vanguardia, 28 March 2014.

  53. 53.

    José Manuel Romero and Vera Gutierrez, Líneas rojas en Cataluña. El País. 30 March 2014.

  54. 54.

    Europa Press, El PSC cree que la sentencia del TC evidencia que el ‘único camino’ es el acuerdo entre gobiernos. La Vanguardia (digital edition), 25 March 2014.

  55. 55.

    Diari de Sessions del Parlament de Catalunya, Sèrie P—Núm. 54. 26 March 2014, p. 23.

  56. 56.

    Juan Ruiz Serra, El PSOE considera que la sentencia revalida sus tesis federalistas. El Periódico (digital edition), 25 March 2014.

  57. 57.

    Juan Manuel Romero and Vera Gutierrez, Líneas rojas en Cataluña. El País, 30 March 2014.

  58. 58.

    ACN/Parlament, El PPC pide a Mas que atienda a la unanimidad del TC y; aparque la consultationa’. El Periódico (digital edition), 25 March 2014.

  59. 59.

    Diari de Sessions del Parlament de Catalunya, Sèrie P—Núm. 54. 26 March 2014, p. 22.

  60. 60.

    Diari de Sessions del Parlament de Catalunya, Sèrie P—Núm. 54. 26 March 2014, p. 22.

  61. 61.

    Juan Manuel Romero and Vera Gutierrez, Líneas rojas en Cataluña. El País, 30 March 2014.

  62. 62.

    Esther Esteban, Mas ignora la ayuda que le queremos dar. El Mundo. 31 March 2014.

  63. 63.

    EFE/Barcelona, Ciutadans se muestran ‘satisfechos’ con la resolución del Tribunal Constitucional. El Periódico (digital edition), 25 March 2014.

  64. 64.

    María Jesús Cañizares, Mas ningunea al TC y redobla su desafío secesionista sin importarle ‘los escollos’. ABC. 27 March 2014.

  65. 65.

    Salvador Sostres, Para blindar la consulta entraríamos en el Govern. El Mundo. 14 September 2014.

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Correspondence to Pablo José Castillo Ortiz.

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P. J. Castillo Ortiz: Lecturer in Law.

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Castillo Ortiz, P.J. Framing the Court: Political Reactions to the Ruling on the Declaration of Sovereignty of the Catalan Parliament. Hague J Rule Law 7, 27–47 (2015). https://doi.org/10.1007/s40803-015-0002-x

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Keywords

  • Rule of law
  • Spanish Constitutional Court
  • Catalonia
  • Framing theory
  • Judicial decision-making