Sujit Choudhry Explains Why Poland Is In The Middle Of A Constitutional Crisis

Sujit Choudhry is a comparative constitutional scholar who lives in Berkeley, California. He is known around the world in his field as one of the foremost authorities on constitutions among both his peers and government officials. His latest book, “Constitutional Democracies in Crisis?”, has a chapter dedicated to the current constitutional democracy crisis going on in the nation of Poland (chronicleweek.com). ┬áIn this chapter he points to a key set of challenges that have led to this happening.

He says that there is a political party in Poland called the Law and Justice Party. It’s a right-wing, nationalist, and populist party. It won a majority of the seats in the legislator in Poland’s parliament in 2015. Since that time the government of Poland, which is now run by them, has been working to dismantle this country’s constitutional democracy. Their two goals are to stop anyone from being able to oppose them as well as removing anything in the law that gets in the way of their rule.

Sujit Choudhry says that many nations in the world are presently having their constitutional democracies challenged by far-right parties. For example, this mindset led to Britain choosing to leave the European Union. Many other countries in Eastern Europe are also facing a crisis such as Ukraine. The United States isn’t invulnerable to this as the Republican party is going increasingly right-wing.

Choudhry has been a law professor since 1999. He began his career teaching at the University of Toronto and is now tenured there. HE has also taught at New York University. He currently teaches comparative constitutional law at the University of California, Berkeley. Related article on blogs.law.nyu.edu/. He also started the Center for Constitutional Transitions which develops information about constitutions that is then used by government officials who are drafting or modifying their nation’s constitution (http://constitutionaltransitions.org/director/#Choudhry).

Many time Sujit Choudhry has worked in the field as a policy advisor to different countries. Some of these countries are Nepal, Yemen, Egypt, Sri Lanka, and Jordan. He says that he enjoys building consensus and seeing things through the eyes of others. He says that to truly understand the situation in a country you need to listen to the people who actually live there.