ADC expresses concern about attempt to impeach Supreme Court
The Association for Civil Rights notes the attempt by the Executive to impeach all members of the Argentinian Supreme Court with great concern. Given the role of the highest court as the last resort for seeking protection of the rights guaranteed by our National Constitution, we regard the initiative to remove the magistrates integrating that body as inadmissible, since the arguments proposed are based mainly on the content of their rulings.
Thus, it is perplexing that one of the main justifications to promote the impeachment is the recent decision of the Court in the City of Buenos Aires v. National Government (sentence of 12.21.2022) case. It should be emphasized that such pronouncement faithfully follows Court jurisprudence developed under previous governments in the cases Province of Santa Fe v. National Government (judgment 338:1389, sentence of 11.24.2015) and Province of Entre Ríos v. National Government (judgment 342:1591, sentence of 10.01.2019), among others.
Dissent with court decisions cannot be grounds for impeachment unless the strict requirements of prevarication are met (Article 269 of the Criminal Code), which demand that competent judicial authorities prove the wrongdoing.
ADC recalls that the Inter-American Court of Human Rights has pointed out, in a constant jurisprudence, that “the State must guarantee the autonomous exercise of the judicial function as regards both its institutional aspect, that is, in relation to the Judiciary as a system, and also as regards its individual aspect, that is, in relation to the person of the specific judge. The IACHR finds it pertinent to clarify that the institutional dimension is related to aspects that are essential for the rule of law, such as the principle of the separation of powers, and the important role played by the judicial function in a democracy. Consequently, this institutional dimension goes beyond the office of the judge and has a collective impact on society as a whole. Furthermore, there is a direct relationship between the institutional dimension of judicial independence and the right of judges to accede to and remain in their posts under general conditions of equality, as an expression of their guarantee of tenure.” (case López Lone et al. v. Honduras, judgment of 10.5.2015, para.194).
We deem that furthering the current impeachment trial is incompatible with the principles mentioned above and that its eventual realization could lead to claims against the country before the Inter-American Human Rights System and other instances within the international human rights framework.