[EDITORIALS]Give up on Jeon for postPresident Roh Moo-hyun must give up on appointing his designate Jeon Hyo-sook as the Constitutional Court chief justice, and find a new person for the post. Kim Han-gill, the floor leader of the governing Uri Party, said that the National Assembly would deal with the confirmation bill of Ms. Jeon. We have kept asserting that it is improper to appoint Ms. Jeon. Still, the government and the governing party keep covering their ears and pushing for her appointment.
Mr. Kim is right at least in saying that the post of Constitutional Court chief justice should not remain vacant for more than three months. However, it would be a bigger problem to resort to an expedient by appointing the wrong person to the post. The Blue House urged Ms. Jeon to resign from her judge’s post at the Constitutional Court, although she had three more years left in her term, as a means to give her a new six-year term. Then the Blue House designated Ms. Jeon, then not a Constitutional Court judge, as the court’s chief justice, which may be unconstitutional. Even if the government and the governing party now go through the proper procedures, it will not be a solution to the problem.
Plus, Ms. Jeon has left observers skeptical as to her neutrality, as she obeyed the presidential office to tender her resignation from her judge post. Now she is just waiting for the Blue House and the governing party to make a decision. If the governing party tries to force the confirmation of Ms. Jeon, it would lead to an unsightly scuffle at the Assembly and it is doubtful that would be the way to keep the authority and status of the Constitutional Court.
Recently, leading figures in the Uri Party have been reflecting on their past. Many of them agree that the foundation of the Uri Party itself was a “seed of tragedy” and “unsuccessful.” It has even been called a “political experiment that needs to be concluded.” They also said they regret the four reform bills as making a wrong start and that they are sorry for their dogmatic administration management. They also urged officials who have made policies that failed to bear that responsibility. Prime Minister Han Myeong-sook also said a few days ago that she could ask the president to form a neutral and all-party cabinet. The constitutional court is the institution that needs a truly neutral and fair figure as its head. If Ms. Han’s suggestion was not from superficial political tactics, the government should first give up its drive to appoint a figure that shares its political stance to the constitutional court.