It is good that the EU Commission is initiating infringement proceedings against Germany because of the ECB ruling by the Federal Constitutional Court.

Because now the conflict is finally coming to light, which is really crucial for the Karlsruhe judges.

They were only marginally interested in the European Central Bank's PEPP bond purchase program in its May 2020 ruling.

It seemed to them to be a suitable hook to examine the legitimacy of the action of EU institutions without having to seek a head-on confrontation with the European Court of Justice.

The EU Commission is now turning its attention to the core question, which has never been clarified even by many of the Karlsruhe European judgments: How far does the European Court of Justice's claim that European law should take precedence over national law extend?

And who can ultimately decide, Karlsruhe or Luxembourg?

Beyond judicial vanities here and there, it is worthy of all honor to argue about this question.

Still, the question arises what has ridden the Commission.

Because it touches on a fragile legal and political balance of power that has given the EU stability for many years.

Karlsruhe has vaguely but aptly described the EU as a "union of states" - which is to say that it is not a federal state, but clearly more than a loose association of independent nation states. The procedure that has now been opened attacks this ascription head-on. Does the Commission want to use legal means to pull a European federal state out of the hat?

It is foolish to break this highly political and not legal discussion at all in this way. It is even more unwise to do this now, when in Germany the anger over Brussels' failures in the Corona crisis has calmed down halfway and the election campaign is just around the corner. Commission head Ursula von der Leyen wants to avoid that Karlsruhe judgments induce supreme courts elsewhere - in Poland, Hungary and France - to override the primacy of EU law. Because it is completely unclear how it could achieve this goal, it threatens to plunge the EU into a constitutional crisis.

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