Chapter

Portugal: Changing Patterns of Delegation and Accountability under the President's Watchful Eyes

Octavio Amorim Neto

in Delegation and Accountability in Parliamentary Democracies

Published in print November 2003 | ISBN: 9780198297840
Published online January 2005 | e-ISBN: 9780191602016 | DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.1093/019829784X.003.0018

Series: Comparative Politics

Portugal: Changing Patterns of Delegation and Accountability under the President's Watchful Eyes

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Portugal’s blend of semi-presidentialism with multipartism has created a regime capable of generating a wide variety of governing solutions. This flexibility has helped consolidate one of Western Europe’s youngest democracies, but it is indicative of how complex the country’s delegation process is. The 1982 constitutional revision simplified the delegation process because it eliminated the possibility of presidential government. However, presidents have remained important in policy-making, particularly due to their use of the presidential veto, which is a unique characteristic of Portugal’s institutional design vis-à-vis its Western European partners. The President’s absolute veto over cabinet decrees constitutes an important constraint on the powerful Portuguese cabinet.

Keywords: chief of state; closed list proportional representation; cohabitation; competing agents; constitutional tribunal; democratization; executive decree; premier-presidentialism; presidential veto power; semi-presidentialism

Chapter.  10306 words. 

Subjects: Comparative Politics

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