Germany’s participation in Europe’s fiscal pact and the bailout fund known as the European Stability Mechanism is being challenged in the courts by German lawmakers, democracy group and trade unions.
The left opposition party Die Linke – the only party to oppose the plans in the Bundestag – applied a complaint at the Karlsruhe-based Federal Constitutional Court, claiming the fiscal pact and the ESM breach powers of German lawmakers. Besides them, the group “Europe Needs More Democracy”, the union of taxpayers, as well as Peter Gauweiler, a lawmaker from the Bavarian sister party of Chancellor Angela Merkel’s Christian Democrats, and former Justice Minister Herta Daeubler-Gmelin also filed separate suits opposing the parliament’s decision.
Late on Friday, two thirds of Germany’s parliament the Bundestag approved the fiscal pact and the country’s participation in the ESM, which have been promoted by Angela Merkel. The Bundesrat, representing Germany’s 16 states, also voted in favor for measures several hours later.
The new laws need the signature of German President Joachim Gauck to come in force. But Gauck said, he plans to delay signing the bills until the Constitutional Court rules out whether they are within German law. The proceedings could take a few weeks.