Analysis of Political and Governmental Organizations of Countries
How are the UK, French, and German electoral, governmental, political, and party systems similar to yet different from one another? Identify the main actors and processes associated with each system and then analyze all three in your own words. Governmental systems refers to parliamentary and semi-presidential. Political systems refers to unitary and federal states. Actors refers to key individuals and institutions. Processes refers to how things work.
|Subject||Law and governance||Pages||12||Style||APA|
Analysis of Political and Governmental Organizations of Countries
Despite being different in some aspects, the governmental, electoral, party, and political systems and structures of various countries across the world have somewhat similar. This paper aims at discussing how the United Kingdom (UK), German, and French electoral, political, party, and governmental systems are similar and different from one another.
According to Wollmann (2000), German system is organized into a parliamentary democracy, the UK’s is organized as a constitutional monarchy, while that of French is a semi-presidential republic. Parliamentary democracy refers to an arrangement where the cabinet relies upon the parliament that is elected by a country’s citizens (Göçmen, 2013). In this arrangement, citizens have a great influence on their country’s politics. On the other hand, the constitutional monarchy implies that the political power monarch, who is the head of state, is limited by a constitution (Wollmann, 2000). Just like the parliamentary democracy, the political power is a parliament in a constitutional monarchy. Either the parliament and the monarch or the parliament alone has responsibility for the UK’s legislation. The monarch has ceremonial responsibilities and does not form part of the UK’s executive. The UK parliament relishes absolute sovereignty and there is a visible fusion of powers: The UK’s executive arm is answerable to and drawn from the country’s legislative arms. The country’s Speaker of the House of Lords used to be the country’s head of the judicial arm until late 2000s along with the creation of the Supreme Court (Göçmen, 2013).
France, conversely, is popular for electing its presidents, who serve as the country’s head of state. Unlike the UK’s monarch, the France’s president enjoys substantial executive power; the president names France’s prime minister who subsequently names France’s cabinet (Wollmann, 2000). In France, the president, prime minister, and cabinet form the country’s executive arm. Unlike in the UK, neither the president, prime minister, nor the cabinet forms part of France’s legislature. French cabinet and the prime minister direct the country’s domestic policies and bills that are passed by the country’s legislature (Göçmen, 2013). Evidently, there is, thus, a considerable, if not perfect, separation of powers in the French system. The semi-presidential system refers to the fact that some components of the French executive, namely the cabinet and the prime minister, are dependent upon and answerable to the country’s parliament, while the president is not (Wollmann, 2000). In a full presidential system, like in the United Sates, the legislature and the executive are entirely separate and are unanswerable to each other except in cases of impeachment (Göçmen, 2013). The French president, thus, has substantial executive clout relative to other European countries, like the UK and German. For instance, they sometimes force through bills that lack the National Assembly’s support, and order reviews of those they do not support, a thing that is impossible in the UK and German (Wollmann, 2000).
Regarding electoral system, the queen or king titles are handed to the subsequent generation in the UK (Göçmen, 2013). In Germany, “Bundeskanzler,” the head of state is elected by the “Bundestag” (Wollmann, 2000). In both nations, the head of state is largely a figure that symbolizes their country. Whereas the Germany’s “Bundestag” elects the “Bundeskanzler,” the UK’s monarch appoints the prime minister (Wollmann, 2000). According to Göçmen (2013), the german governmental system is more intricate relative to that of the UK since Germany’s political power is segmented into several political entities. In the UK, there are only the parliament and government. Within Germany’s “Bundestag,” all delegates are equal (Wollmann, 2000). Conversely, the legislation in the UK mainly takes place in a single part of parliament, the House of Commons. Göçmen (2013) reasons that legislation is the most crucial competence of a parliament and as a result of that, the House of Lords is less powerful than the House of Commons (Wollmann, 2000).
The UK holds general elections after every five years, or earlier than five years if a 2/3 majority of Commons is attained (Göçmen, 2013). The UK’s constituencies comprise of single-member districts and the members of the constituencies are elected through first-past-the-post, that is, the candidate with the highest number of votes wins a seat (Wollmann, 2000). Göçmen (2013) notes that if a party wins a minimum of 326 out of 650 seats in the House of Commons, the party is considered outright winners of the election and their most prominent elected members form the country’s cabinet, the executive. In the event no party wins outright, a coalition will be formed.
France, on the other hand, holds presidential elections every five years and its parliamentary election about one month later; the elected members serve five-year terms (Wollmann, 2000). The country’s president is elected through the two-round system. If no presidential candidate garners more than 50% of the country’s total votes cast in the first round, the top two candidates proceed to the second round of the country’s presidential election (Göçmen, 2013). Defeated presidential candidates often back up one of the two remaining candidates. French constituencies comprise of single-member districts and members of the same are equally elected through the two-round arrangement. Candidates who are able to garner a minimum of 12.5% of the legible electorate (and not 12.5% of the total votes cast) equally proceed to the second round of the election (Wollmann, 2000). Outright majorities and coalitions are roughly commonplace. According to the French electoral system, the president names the cabinet and prime minister from the ruling/dominant party in the ruling bloc (Göçmen, 2013). Should they be from one party with the president, the government enters a cohabitation period.
Additionally, in the UK, there are just two principal parties: the Labour Party and the Conservative Party (Göçmen, 2013). In German, there are more crucial parties, like the CDU, Bündnis 90/Die Grünen, Die Linke, SPD, and Die Alternative für Deutschland. Germany is partitioned into 16 federal states called the “Bundesländer” with all of them having their individual governments (Göçmen, 2013). For instance, they have obligation for the education or police. In the UK, there are no federal states, instead there are 650 election districts. The UK system is at least 400 years old, whereas Germany has only approximately 65 years of experience (Wollmann, 2000). The UK fosters very robust party notion and the existence of bigger and fewer parties: as the legislature and executive are inseparable, party discipline and unity tend to be very robust (Göçmen, 2013). France, with its executive presidency being the eventual goal, tends to foster more personal leadership. If leading figures/members of a party do not approve the direction of a party, they will usually break away and form a new party.
From the analysis, there exists differences and similarities between the UK, German, and French electoral, political, party, and governmental systems.
Göçmen, İ. (2013). The Role of Faith-Based Organizations in Social Welfare Systems: A comparison of France, Germany, Sweden, and the United Kingdom. Nonprofit and Voluntary Sector Quarterly, 42(3), 495–516. https://doi.org/10.1177/0899764013482046