[This is the second part of a comment on the Portuguese elections aftermath, the author will soon provide the final part of this article – PART 3.]
by Sérgio Maia Tavares Marques, Jurist and student of the Master's degree in EU Law of UMinho
Previously, I have argued that the seeming failure of Portugal for not presenting the draft for the annual budget within the deadline fixed in the TSCG could not be considered a failure. I pointed that the reason for that fact (the delay/failure) was the political negotiation process in the country that it was not yet concluded at that time following a post electoral circumstance never seen before. Days have come and gone and on 26th of November a new Socialist + Leftist parties government took over. Mr. António Costa came to office in replacement of the right wing coalition led by PSD and the former PM, Mr. Pedro Passos Coelho, who had been originally nominated by the President. However, a motion of rejection was voted and approved by the left wing parties altogether and a new cabinet was formed and got in place.
As I underlined, my point was that it was not possible, nor advised for Portugal, to send the European Commission a budget draft when an upcoming administration (with its expenditure priorities) was still unknown. The country could not commit itself to figures that would only be mythical and/or misplaced. Plus and more importantly, I reasoned (in constitutional pluralist terms) that the appointment of a new government, as a direct result of the people´s will expression, can only be considered part of a national identity. In that sense, it falls within the scope of article 4/2 TEU. Therefore, the EU should encourage the demos and not persecute it. Nonetheless, Mr. Valdis Dombrovskis pressured Portugal with possible judicial actions and the situation was put on hold.