The factions of the SPD and FDP in the Hessian state parliament are using all their power to oppose a law that they have passed themselves.

Because the law professor hired by them considers it a violation of the Basic Law.

What seems absurd is the quintessence of a press conference to which the Social Democrats and Liberals invited with Aplomb on Thursday.

Ewald Hetrodt

Correspondent for the Rhein-Main-Zeitung in Wiesbaden.

  • Follow I follow

"Legal opinion states: Kühne-Hörmann's move up to the state parliament is unconstitutional," was written in large blue letters above the press release, which the Social Democratic faction leader Günter Rudolph and the FDP politician Jörg-Uwe Hahn happily called for the resignation of the interior minister Peter Beuth (CDU) garnished.

Misrepresented the legislature

His house is responsible for legislation that became relevant when former Prime Minister Volker Bouffier (CDU) left the state parliament in the summer.

Because Bouffier's direct replacement candidate Sven Simon is a member of the European Parliament, he did not want to accept the vacant state parliament mandate.

As has long been customary in such cases, the CDU politician Eva Kühne-Hörmann, who is on the state list, moved up.

That suited her after she was replaced as Minister of Justice.

In addition, the CDU retained its 40 mandates in this way.

That was important because the CDU and the Greens together only have a majority of one vote in Parliament.

Nobody would have taken offense at the procedure if it had not been noticed how the Ministry of the Interior changed the state election law before Bouffier left.

It is now undisputed that this only corrected a wording in the state elections law that incorrectly reflected the will of the legislator.

"It was tricked"

If Kühne-Hörmann replaced Bouffier, this corresponded to the procedure intended by the legislature.

The wording of the law, which falsifies this will, would have meant that directly elected MPs could not be replaced by list candidates like Kühne-Hörmann.

Then the Union would have lost a mandate.

In order to prevent this at all costs, the text passage in the state elections law was amended in May 2022 so that it again corresponds to the will of the legislator and the version passed by the state parliament in 1997.

The criticism of the opposition was not directed at the correction of the text as such.

Rather, Rudolph and Hahn complained that Interior Minister Beuth had not informed Parliament about the editorial change to the text.

They also complained that Beuth already knew about the error in 2016 without correcting it at the time.

"It was tricked," Rudolph stated.

Hahn spoke of a "contempt for Parliament".

But both of them had the lawyer Martin Will explain to them that these allegations were of little legal relevance.

If necessary, to the state court

Instead, Will believes he has spotted another serious mistake.

In his view, the current relevant provision is unconstitutional as such.

According to Will, it is a violation of the equal suffrage enshrined in the Basic Law if a directly elected member of parliament is replaced by a list candidate.

Apparently he didn't know what only became clear in the press conference when asked.

The regulation, which the lawyer considers unconstitutional, was passed in the state parliament on November 20, 1997 with the majority of the SPD, Greens and FDP against the votes of the CDU.

This is what it says in the minutes of the plenary session, from which Hahn had the greatness to present.

If necessary, the SPD and FDP had previously announced that the law would be submitted to the state court.

If they actually took action against a set of rules that they themselves had decided on, this would be an unprecedented event in the history of the Hessian parliament.