I am surprised the release of the wording of the proposed amendment to the Constitution has not received more attention today. Stephen Collins reports on the wording in a piece on the inside pages of the Irish Times. From the article:
The amendment will involve the insertion of the following subsection after subsection 9° of article 29.4 of the Constitution.
The new subsection 10° will state: “The State may ratify the Treaty on Stability, Co-ordination and Governance in the Economic and Monetary Union done at Brussels on the 2nd day of March 2012. No provision of this Constitution invalidates laws enacted, acts done or measures adopted by the State that are necessitated by the obligations of the State under that Treaty or prevents laws enacted, acts done or measures adopted by bodies competent under that Treaty from having the force of law in the State.”
I just heard the normally excellent Stephen Donnelly say on RTE’s Drivetime programme that the amendment will put detailed fiscal rules in the Constitution. My reading is that the purpose of the amendment is to ensure that the proposed Fiscal Responsibility Act that will establish the rules is not in violation of the Constitution. The amendment does not put fiscal rules in the Constitution.
The draft of the Treaty is available here. The next piece of crucial information will come with the publication of the proposed Fiscal Responsibility Bill. The referendum to ratify the amendment will take place on Thursday, May 31.