April 17, 2023

The Swedish government’s proposal to make it more difficult to change the country’s constitution could negatively affect democracy. While there are things in the constitution that might need stronger protection, there are many that should not be made more difficult to change, writes Ludwig Beckmann. Svenska Dagbladet discussion page.

The government recently proposed a reform aimed at making it more difficult to change the constitution. The goal is to protect democracy. But Professor Ludwig Beckmann points out that many clauses in the constitution do not affect democracy and therefore do not need to be made any more difficult to change. Therefore, the tightening of constitutional amendment rules should be evaluated by democratic criteria. Beckman points out that any new constitutional amendment must strengthen protections for provisions important to democracy, and only for them.

“The solution that has not been considered further in the investigation is a layered model of constitutional amendment under which the most stringent requirements apply only to those parts of the constitution that are essential to democracy. This is the system in countries such as Germany and Canada. The German constitution provides enhanced protection for the provision that Germany must be democratic and protect the principle of human dignity.The equivalent in our case is the first chapter of the form of government.The Canadian constitution contains no fewer than six different constitutional procedures.Amendment where the degree of difficulty depends on the parts of the constitution to be amended.International research on different models Of constitutional amendment is very positive about the layered model. There are not only two options: either hard or easy to change the constitution. A layered model combines the benefits of constitutional protection strengthening democracy with the benefits associated with securing as much influence as possible of people’s power over the country’s laws,” writes Ludwig Beckmann. .

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