Rights of MPs ‘infringed’ in plenary session on referendum, high court rules

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MPs’ rights were infringed during the plenary session devoted to passing referendum legislation in the Catalan parliament on September 6 and 7, 2017, according to Spain’s Constitutional Court.

The ruling comes after the unionist Cs opposition party alleged that agreements made to facilitate the passing of referendum legislation infringed MPs’ rights “to exercise their representative functions.”

Cs MP Lorena Roldán praised the ruling on Tuesday, and accused the pro-independence parties and the parliamentary bureau of “twisting the rules” to “bypass the Constitution and trample on millions of Catalans.”

According to the high court, the legislation to allow a referendum had already been declared unconstitutional, and the text of the proposed legislation had not been submitted to the Council for Statutory Guarantees.

The court also said that had the legislation been subject to a parliamentary vote, the need for a simple majority to pass would have “infringed the decision-making capacity of the rest of the parties and, therefore, those in the minority.”

The ruling comes during the trial of independence leaders, in which the speaker at the time, Carme Forcadell, who is charged with rebellion, in allowing votes on independence-related issues in the chamber.