July 23, 2013

Separation of Powers in Eastern European Democracies

Cristina E. Parau, University of Oxford, Department of Politics and International Relations, and J. Wittmeier Bains are publishing Constitutional Designs: Lessons We Can Learn from the Early American Republic in the Romanian Journal of Comparative Law. Here is the abstract.

This article addresses the vexed question of who should have the “last word” in saying what a democratic constitution means in controversies between the Judiciary and the other Branches of government. The aim is to contribute to debates in post-Communist Central and Eastern Europe (CEE), which to date have been dominated by the paradigm of a Constitutional Court (CC) with monopoly power to expound the constitution. This institutional configuration sits uneasily with the separation of powers and checks and balances – shibboleths which are nonetheless poorly understood in CEE. It is believed that the American Founders, who invented these practical mechanisms in their modern and now universally accepted forms, may offer particularly fruitful insights which constitutional designers everywhere could learn from.
Download the full text of the article from SSRN at the link. 

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