Over the last decade, governments have challenged the rule of law in Central and Eastern Europe. Under the veneer of a democratic mandate, politicians have sought to consolidate power using an array of tactics, including tightening restrictions on independent media, steadily changing institutions to bolster executive power, and appointing loyalists to the judiciary.
In recent months, tensions between the worst violators and the European Union have escalated. Amidst the need for COVID-19 recovery funds, threats to women’s and LGBTQ rights, and the question of the supremacy of European law above national laws, what is the current state of the rule of law in Central and Eastern Europe? How should the US and EU address these challenges to democratic governance and human rights?