[EDITORIALS]Don’t disrupt the courts

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[EDITORIALS]Don’t disrupt the courts

The severity of efforts by Uri Party lawmakers to shake up the judicial system is beginning to exceed acceptable levels. Recent complaints by the governing party about the judiciary were emotional outbursts rather than constructive criticism, and there have been cases where Uri legislators have even threatened the existence of the judiciary by failing to respect its rulings.
During yesterday’s National Assembly session, a representative from the governing party complained that numerous lawmakers from the Uri Party have had their seats in the National Assembly stripped by the courts and that they were the victims of biased rulings and misinterpretations of related laws. One lawmaker, in a written statement distributed to the press in advance, went so far as to insist on the need for a revision of the constitution to abolish the Constitutional Court. He later omitted that part during the actual questioning, due to concerns over the reaction, but the idea was that he wanted to abolish the Constitutional Court because it didn’t concur with his party’s interest.
The Uri Party lawmakers that are leading the attacks have a lot of nerve, considering what led them to the complaints. The governing party’s legislators praised the Constitutional Court’s verdict when it dismissed the National Assembly’s motion to impeach President Roh Moo-hyun. But as soon as the court ruled that the government’s planned capital move was unconstitutional, the lawmakers did an about-face and used harsh words like “judicial coup” to slander the court.
Their claims that the governing party is experiencing discrimination in rulings on campaign violations also lack persuasiveness. Among the 45 legislators who have been indicted for election violations, 29 are Uri Party lawmakers. The number easily exceeds those of other parties, including the Grand National’s 12. So it is only natural that the governing party should forfeit more seats, nine, than the Grand National Party, which has lost three seats. How is it possible for the governing party members to assert that they are victims of discrimination without even reflecting on their misdeeds?
The political sector must not stir up the judicial system only because the rulings do not favor their positions. We must not allow politicians to use the judicial system as a tool to strengthen their authority, like past dictatorships. We urge the politicians to discontinue efforts to disrupt the courts.
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