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Borrowing Constitutional Designs
Author: Cindy Skach

ISBN: 9780691146720
Format: Paperback
Number Of Pages: 168
Published: 16 June 2010
Country of Publication: US
Dimensions (cm): 22.9 x 15.2 x 0.9
Description:


After the collapse of communism, some thirty countries scrambled to craft democratic constitutions. Surprisingly, the constitutional model they most often chose was neither the pure parliamentary model found in most of Western Europe at the time, nor the presidential model of the Americas. Rather, it was semi-presidentialism--a rare model known more generally as the "French type." This constitutional model melded elements of pure presidentialism with those of pure parliamentarism. Specifically, semi-presidentialism combined a popularly elected head of state with a head of government responsible to a legislature.

"Borrowing Constitutional Designs" questions the hasty adoption of semi-presidentialism by new democracies. Drawing on rich case studies of two of the most important countries for European politics in the twentieth century--Weimar Germany and the French Fifth Republic--Cindy Skach offers the first theoretically focused, and historically grounded, analysis of semi-presidentialism and democracy. She demonstrates that constitutional choice matters, because under certain conditions, semi-presidentialism structures incentives ...

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