“Abusive comparativism” – method of legitimizing the capture of the constitutional landscape in Poland

The paper deals with the “abusive comparativism” – method of framing arguments regarding various aspects of rule of law principle, based on reference to other jurisdictions, without analysing broader constitutional, historical or institutional context. It aims, first of all, at broadening the scope of discretionary legislative power in relation to changes regarding constitutional institutions. Secondly, in the rule of law backsliding context, it allows to undermine the independence of institutions. The term “abusive comparativism” was used in relation to Turkey, however a similar method was analysed in context of Hungary. The paper constitutes a case study dealing primarily with the amendments to the Act on National Council of Judiciary in Poland introduced in 2018. It analyses how the “abusive comparativism” was expressed by political actors, by new National Council of Judiciary and finally how it was reviewed by the Court of Justice and captured Constitutional Tribunal.