The Parliament of the Republic of Navonia is the highest legislative organ in Navonia. The parliament of Navonia is an institution which represents the Navonian people through a system of democratic representation and is supposed to be the highest formal political organ of the country. It is formed after a nationwide election every five years and is entitled to issue laws and ratify resolutions or treaties. The parliament can also appeal decrees or, by constitutional majority, alter the Navonian Constitution. The Navonian parliament is chaired by the High Representative when it assembles for voting. During consultation and debate in committee, the committee chairman assumes this task.
A record is kept of the votes in the Navonian Parliament, which can be consulted at the National Archive.
Composition and working Edit
Formation and composition of Parliament Edit
The Parliament of Navonia has to issue elections on February 13 every five years. The first step towards elections is the dissolution of parliament through the voting of a 'law of dissolution'. Contrary to most nations, parliament is only dissolved the day before the elections. This implies that the government also retains full power until the day just before the elections. When the government would loose its majority support in parliament and no new compromise can be found, intermediate elections can be held following the same process.
After the elections are over, the seats in parliament are divided over the parties that participated. Before the election reform of 1961 this distribution was not entirely representative, since voting was done by regional constituencies. Each constituency accounted for an amount of representatives based on a census held every ten years. Another factor of bias was that all provinces have a different weight, meaning that the parliamentary seats were not divided equally over the provinces. Due to a weakened position of the leading Unity Party and Conservative Party a reform was pushed trough. Since then the system of censuses and representatives was changed by a direct nationwide election. The reform remains controversial up till today, though most parties have accepted the system.
The current parliament took place on March 1, 2011. If it fills out its legal term it will be in power for the five years until February 12, 2016. This legislature the 120 seats are divided as follows: 55 for PULP, 30 for the Liberal & Reform Party, 18 for the Democratic Union and 17 for the Conservative Party. PULP and DU make up government with about 60% of the votes, though there is one liberal minister in the government for foreign affairs too.
Working of Parliament Edit
There are three kinds of parliamentary procedures: (1) the parliamentary debate for the general discussing of a topic, (2) the parliamentary vote for ratifying a decision, and (3) the parliamentary consultation for questioning government representatives. Parliament can apply these procedures in general assembly, in which case it is chaired by the High Representative. Seating in general assembly is however not always mandatory, several issues can be discussed in committee, though the final vote always has to occur in general assembly. The division in committees is made for the handling of specific issues and does not require the mandatory presence of all representatives, as is the case with the general assembly. When seating in committee the parliament is seated by a committee chairman.
When voting upon a matter each representative can vote pro, contra or abstain from voting. A decision can only be made through approval by a majority, which means more votes pro than contra are cast. The representatives who abstained from voting are not taken into consideration. For Constitutional amendments and special laws a special majority is required, demanding that at least 2/3 of the votes is pro (again not counting the abstains). Contrary to a lot of other democracies, Navonia has no quorum which has to be attained. This is due to the mandatory presence of its representatives when seating in general assembly.
Powers of Parliament Edit
The parliament is the highest legislative organ in Navonia and as an institution it represents the Navonian people. It's most important task is to pass legislation, most commonly in the form of a law. The parliament can also alter the Constitution by a special majority. Besides the conventional powers of a highest legislative organ, the Navonian parliament also exercises control over other levels of legislation. The parliament for instance can repeal a decree by the regional parliaments over which it observes hierarchical control. Ordinances and ordinations by the federal government or regional governors can also be repealed by parliament, in the case of regional legislation even if it was formerly approved by the regional parliament.
Within the framework of democratic control between the different powers and conform to the principle of sovereignty of the people, parliament is responsible for the appointment and dismissal of the government. This is done by respectively a motion of trust and a motion of distrust. These motions can be voted for/against a single government representative as well as against the government in its entirety. The regional governors are appointed and dismissed by the regional parliaments, but indirect control is exercised through the Minister of Internal Affairs. A further hold over the executive power can be achieved trough a dedication law by which parliament instructs the government to perform a certain task. The dedication law can however also be used to grant the government proxies within a limited scope of action and time.
Additional powers of importance include the ratification of the federal budget and of international treaties. Since parliament issues the laws, it is responsible for the interpretation of the law by the principle of authentic interpretation.