Presidentialization of Parliamentarism in Serbia – Causes and Consequences

Authors

DOI:

https://doi.org/10.12797/Politeja.19.2022.76.17

Keywords:

Parliamentarism, presidentialism, electoral system, party system, political culture

Abstract

Although the principle of separation of powers in Serbia has been regulated following the parliamentary model in the span of three decades, it has in practice functioned most often as a semi-presidential system. This paper analyzes two groups of factors that are the cause of presidentialization. Institutional factors that systematically create an environment suited for presidentialization include shortcomings in the constitutional design, the proportional electoral system and oligarchic tendencies in the party system. Direct election gives the President of the Republic strong legitimacy, and by retaining the position of party leader, in an electoral system with closed electoral lists and weak intra-party democracy, the head of state can easily control the parliamentary majority, the government and the parliament, thus upsetting the balance of power. Another group of factors that strongly affect the action of the aforementioned institutional aspects are a political culture with a strong authoritarian tradition and a lack of respect for the constitution and the democratic tradition. The consequences are strong authoritarian and populist tendencies and a departure from the liberal concept of democracy. The options proposed by the academic and political public as a solution to the situation blocking the consolidation of democracy in Serbia include the normativization of the incompatibility of office of the head of state and party leader, the abolition of direct elections, and a semi-presidential system.

Downloads

Download data is not yet available.

Author Biography

Milan Jovanović, University of Belgrade

Is a full professor at the University of Belgrade, Serbia. At the Faculty of Political Sciences, he teaches courses on the Political System of Serbia, Elections and Electoral Systems, Representation and Political Institutions. He is the deputy editor of the Journal Archives of Legal and Social Sciences and a member of the editorial board of the journal Serbian Political Thought. His fields of research include political systems, elections, electoral systems, political parties and parliamentarism.

References

Bachrach P., Baratz M.S., “Two Faces of Power”, American Political Science Review, vol. 56, no. 4 (1962), https://doi.org/10.2307/1952796. DOI: https://doi.org/10.2307/1952796

Bieber F., The Rise of Authoritarianism in the Western Balkans, Cham 2019, https://doi.org/10.1007/978-3-030-22149-2. DOI: https://doi.org/10.1007/978-3-030-22149-2

Bujwid-Kurek E., Serbia w nowej przestrzeni ustrojowej. Dzieje, ustrój, konstytucja, Kraków 2012.

“Constitution of the Republic of Serbia”, Official Gazette of the RS, no. 98/2006, at http://www.ustavni.sud.rs/page/view/en-GB/235-100028/constitution#d5.

Čavoški K., O neprijatelju, Beograd 1989.

Dahl R.A., On Democracy, New Haven–London 1998.

Dimić L., Stojanović D., Jovanović M., Srbija 1804-2004: Tri viđenja ili poziv na dijalog, Beograd 2009.

Duverger M., Political Parties: Their Organisation and Activity in the Modern State, London–New York 1954.

Duverger M., Echec au roi, Paris 1978.

Elgie R., “The Perils of Semi-Presidentialism: Are They Exaggerated?”, Democratization, vol. 15, no. 1 (2008), https://doi.org/10.1080/13510340701768125. DOI: https://doi.org/10.1080/13510340701768125

Elgie R., Semi-Presidentialism: Sub-Types and Democratic Performance, Oxford 2011, https://doi.org/10.1093/acprof:oso/9780199585984.001.0001. DOI: https://doi.org/10.1093/acprof:oso/9780199585984.001.0001

Elgie R., “Three Waves of Semi-presidential Studies”, Democratization, vol. 23, no. 1 (2016), https://doi.org/10.1080/13510347.2014.960853. DOI: https://doi.org/10.1080/13510347.2014.960853

Ginsburg T., Kagan R.A., “Introduction: Institutionalist Approaches to Courts as Political Actors”, in: T. Ginsburg, R.A. Kagan (eds.), Institutions & Public Law: Comparative Approaches, New York 2005.

Jakubiak Ł., “Elementy prezydencjalizmu w systemie ustrojowym Francji okresu V Republiki”, Politeja, vol. 17, no. 1(64) (2020), https://doi.org/10.12797/Politeja.17.2020.64.03. DOI: https://doi.org/10.12797/Politeja.17.2020.64.03

Jones M.P., “Presidential and Legislative Elections”, in: E.S. Herron, R.J. Pekkanen, M.S. Shugart (eds.), The Oxford Handbook of Electoral Systems, Oxford 2018, https://doi.org/10.1093/oxfordhb/9780190258658.013.23. DOI: https://doi.org/10.1093/oxfordhb/9780190258658.013.23

Jovanović M., “Izborni sistem Srbije – dve decenije posle”, in: S. Orlović (ed.), Partije i izbori u Srbiji: 20 godina, Beograd 2011.

Jovanović M., “The Designing of Serbia’s Electoral System”, Serbian Political Thought, vol. 3, no. 1 (2011), https://doi.org/10.22182/spt.312011.4 DOI: https://doi.org/10.22182/spt.312011.4

Jovanović M., “Izborni i partijski sistem u funkciji prezidencijalizacije parlamentarizma u Srbiji”, in: E. Šarčević, D. Simović (eds.), Paralamentarizam u Srbiji, Sarajevo 2018.

Jovičić M., “Parlamentarni sistem nasuprot predsedničkom i skupštinskom sistemu”, Arhiv za pravne i društvene nauke, vol. 48, no. 1 (1992).

Lijphart A., “Constitutional Choices for New Democracies”, Journal of Democracy, vol. 2, no. 1 (1991), https://doi.org/10.1353/jod.1991.0011. DOI: https://doi.org/10.1353/jod.1991.0011

Lijphart A., “Democratization and Constitutional Choices in Czecho-Slovakia, Hungary and Poland 1989-91”, Journal of Theoretical Politics, vol. 4, no. 2 (1992), https://doi.org/10.1177%2F0951692892004002005. DOI: https://doi.org/10.1177/0951692892004002005

Lindberg S.I. (ed.), Autocratization Turns Viral – Democracy Report 2021, University of Gothenburg: V-Dem Institute, 2021, 15 June 2021, at https://www.v-dem.net/static/website/files/dr/dr_2021.pdf.

“Marinković: Vučić od 2017. najmanje 25 puta kršio Ustav u vezi sa sudijama“, N1, 8 November 2021, at https://rs.n1info.com/vesti/marinkovic-vucic-od-2017-najmanje-25-putakrsio-ustav-u-vezi-sa-sudijama/.

Matić M., O srpskom političkom obrascu, Beograd 2000.

Marković R., Ustavno pravo i političke institucije, Beograd 2008.

Marković R., Sa ustavne osmatračnice, Beograd 2017.

Marković S.G., „Razvoj parlamentarizma u Srbiji”, in: V. Pavlović, S. Orlović (eds.), Dileme i izazovi parlamentarizma, Beograd 2007.

Nation in transit – Serbia 2020, 8 October 2021, at https://freedomhouse.org/country/serbia/nations-transit/2020.

Nation in transit – Serbia 2021, 8 October 2021, at https://freedomhouse.org/country/serbia/nations-transit/2021.

Nikolić P., “Ustav Srbije i problemi demokratizacije”, Pravni život, vol. 41, no. 1/2 (1991).

Orlović S., “Partijski sistem Srbije”, in: S. Orlović (ed.), Partije i izbri u Srbiji: 20 godina, Beograd 2011.

Panebianco A., Political Parties: Organization and Power, Cambridge 1988.

Parsons C., How to Map Arguments in Political Science, New York 2007.

Pasquino G., “Semi-Presidentialism: A Political Model at Work”, European Journal of Political Research, vol. 31, no. 1 (1997), https://doi.org/10.1111/1475-6765.00309. DOI: https://doi.org/10.1111/1475-6765.00309

Pejić I., “Podela vlasti u ustavnom sistemu Srbije: mogućnost ravnoteže”, in: E. Šarčević, D. Simović (eds.), Parlamentarizam u Srbiji, Sarajevo 2018.

Pierson P., “Increasing Returns, Path Dependence, and the Study of Politics”, The American Political Science Review, vol. 94, no. 2 (2000), https://doi.org/10.2307/2586011. DOI: https://doi.org/10.2307/2586011

Poguntke T., Webb P., “The Presidentialization of Contemporary Democratic Politics: Evidence, Causes, and Consequences”, in: P. Webb, T. Poguntke (eds.), The Presidentialization of Politics: A Comparative Study of Modern Democracies, Oxford 2005, https://doi.org/10.1093/0199252017.001.0001. DOI: https://doi.org/10.1093/0199252017.001.0001

“Profesor Čiplić: Vučić prekršio Ustav više stotina puta, naročito u Vašingtonu”, 021, 16 May 2021, at https://www.021.rs/story/Info/Srbija/274087/Profesor-Ciplic-Vucic-prekrsio-Ustav-vise-stotina-puta-narocito-u-Vasingtonu.%20html.

Protsyk O., “Politics of Intraexecutive Conflict in Semipresidential Regimes in Eastern Europe”, East European Politics and Societies, vol. 19, no. 2 (2005), https://doi.org/10.1177/0888325404270672. DOI: https://doi.org/10.1177/0888325404270672

Saiegh S.M., “Executive-legislative Relations”, in: J. Gandhi, R. Ruiz-Rufino (eds.), Routledge Handbook of Comparative Political Institutions, New York 2015.

Sajó A., Uitz R., The Constitution of Freedom: An Introduction to Legal Constitutionalism, Oxford 2017, https://doi.org/10.1093/oso/9780198732174.001.0001. DOI: https://doi.org/10.1093/oso/9780198732174.001.0001

Sartori G., Comparative Constitutional Engineering: An Inquiry into Structures, Incentives and Outcomes, New York 1994.

Sedelius T., Mashtaler O., “Two Decades of Semi-Presidentialism: Issues of Intra-Executive Conflict in Central and Eastern Europe 1991-2011”, East European Politics, vol. 29, no. 2 (2013), https://doi.org/10.1080/21599165.2012.748662. DOI: https://doi.org/10.1080/21599165.2012.748662

Shugart M.S., Carey J.M., Presidents and Assemblies: Constitutional Design and Electoral Dynamics, Cambridge 1992, https://doi.org/10.1017/CBO9781139173988. DOI: https://doi.org/10.1017/CBO9781139173988

Shugart M.S., “Semi-presidential Systems: Dual Executive and Mixed Authority Patterns”, French Politics, vol. 3, no. 3 (2005), https://doi.org/10.1057/palgrave.fp.8200087. DOI: https://doi.org/10.1057/palgrave.fp.8200087

Simović D., Polupredsednički sistem, Beograd 2008.

Simović D., “Prezidencijalizacija srpskog parlamentarizma (2006-2016)”, Srpska politička misao, Special Edition 2017, https://doi.org/10.22182/spm.specijal2017.6. DOI: https://doi.org/10.22182/spm.specijal2017.6

Simović D., “Uzroci prezidencijalizovanja parlamentarizma i dometi ustavnog inženjeringa u Republici Srbiji”, in: E. Šarčević, D. Simović (eds.), Parlamentarizam u Srbiji, Sarajevo 2018.

Simović D., Petrov V., Ustavno pravo, Beograd 2014.

Skach C., Borrowing Constitutional Designs: Constitutional Law in Weimar Germany and the French Fifth Republic, Princeton 2005.

Skach C., “The ‘Newest’ Separation of Powers: Semipresidentialism”, International Journal of Constitutional Law, vol. 5, no. 1 (2007), https://doi.org/10.1093/icon/mol025. DOI: https://doi.org/10.1093/icon/mol025

Stojanović D., Ustav i političko zakonodavstvo Republike Srbije, Niš 1991.

Stojiljković Z., “Struktura, modeli i praksa unutarstranačkih odnosa”, in: Z. Lutovac (ed.), Političke stranke u Srbiji: struktura i funkcionisanje, Beograd 2005.

Stojiljković Z., Mihailović V., Spasojević D., “Unutarstranačka demokratija u Srbiji”, in: Z. Stojljković, D. Spasojević, J. Lončar (eds.), Kako internu unutarstranačku demokratiju učiniti mogućom: institucionalni faktori i interna demokratija unutarstranačkih odnosa, Beograd 2015.

Tomić Z., “Vučić u oštrom sukobu sa Ustavom”, Danas, 7 May 2019, at https://www.danas.rs/dijalog/licni-stavovi/vucic-u-ostrom-sukobu-sa-ustavom/.

Verney D.V., “Parliamentary Government and Presidential Government”, in: A. Lijphart (ed.), Parliamentary versus Presidential Government, Oxford 1994.

Vladisavljević N., “Izbori, demokratija i takmičarski autoritarizam i takmičarski autoritarizam u Srbiji 1990-2000”, in: M. Jovanović, D.Vučićević (eds.), Kako, koga i zašto smo birali – Izbori u Srbiji 1990-2020, Beograd 2020.

Vučić O., “Pet godina posle: primena Ustava, poštovanje Ustava”, in: M. Petrović (ed.), Ustav Republike Srbije: pet godina posle: (2006-2011), Niš 2011.

Downloads

Published

2022-05-10

How to Cite

Jovanović, Milan. 2022. “Presidentialization of Parliamentarism in Serbia – Causes and Consequences”. Politeja 19 (1(76):345-63. https://doi.org/10.12797/Politeja.19.2022.76.17.