By Cristina Leston-Bandeira
This publication is exclusive because the simply publication at the Portuguese parliament in English. The Portuguese parliament is a invaluable case learn to appreciate the various phases of improvement of a newly democratic parliament. From laws to Legitimation exhibits that, as democracy built, the position of the Portuguese parliament replaced significantly. while within the first years of democracy the Assembleia da Republica used to be focused on its legislative function, through the moment decade its legitimation position increased, making scrutiny parliament's major functionality.
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Extra info for From Legislation to Legitimation: The Role of the Portuguese Parliament
Having the advantage of majoritarian support, the government put forward bills that it was not able to carry in the previous legislature. A good example of this was the so-called Pacote Laboral (basically a new Law on Dismissals). After considerable criticism from the trade unions and a general strike, the bill was approved in April 1988 and, three months later, the Constitutional Tribunal judged it unconstitutional. 60 The changes undertaken in the Rules of Procedure of the Assembleia da República in 1988 were also representative of this; the polemical MP Silva Marques was ascribed the task to revise parliament’s Rules of Procedure and the newspapers reported on strong discontent from the opposition with the whole consideration process.
Until 1976, there was a provisional situation in Portugal and only then was the first parliament elected; this first parliament constituted the I legislature, which lasted until 1980. This legislature contained much instability and the Assembleia da República could be considered as ‘indeterminate’. However, this indeterminate status ended by 1979, after the last presidential cabinet, contrary to Liebert’s interpretation that extends it until 1982. 38 And not IV legislature as is indicated in Liebert’s text.
This marked the beginning of a new cycle in Portuguese politics and represented a definite change in the role of parliament. The main proposition for the pattern of development of the Assembleia da República between 1983 and 1995 is that it developed from a legislation parliament towards a legitimation one. This implies a change in both the policy-making and the legitimation dimensions. In policy-making, we suggest that, following Philip Norton’s typology, the Assembleia da República changed in the following way: • III legislature: a policy-influencing legislature • IV legislature: a policy-making legislature • V and VI legislatures: a legislature with little or no policy effect.