Austrian Ambivalences in Addressing COVID-19

Austria´s governmental responses to COVID-19 could be told in two different narratives:
A state of emergency was never declared in Austria, constitutional law was not significantly amended, and remote concepts of the parliament have not been introduced. The Austrian Constitutional Court (ACC) was continuously working and punctually identifying infringements of the rule of law or fundamental rights.
The ACC, however, decided not in a summary proceeding and typically after the COVID-19 measures have been out of force. The Austrian government often changed strategies and communicated news via press conferences, which made it impossible for the ordinary people to know exactly which rules have been relevant.
In conclusion, Austrian democracy can learn a lot from the COVID-19 crisis. Different structural reforms could be initiated, but liberal democracy has not been threatened by the pandemic.