THE INSTITUTIONAL REFORMS AND BICAMERAL SYSTEM OF PARLIAMENT IN ITALY: AN ANALYSIS OF THE SITUATION CONCERNING THE REFORMS
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The author confronts the dilemma whether important institutional reforms could be implemented most effectively by a parliamentary way and by means of an electoral referendum. He analyzes the results of the referendum on the election law, held in 1993, as well as the consequences of further electoral reforms, particularly for the concept of bicameral parliament in Italy. He also examines unsuccessful attempts to amend the constitution made by three bicameral commissions, particularly d'Alema Commission, whose proposals included the departure from a purely bicameral system, reduction of the number of parliamentarians and differentiation of the functions of the chambers. The article provides a critical analysis of constitutional reforms undertaken during the 14th and 15th term of office of parliament and, particularly, examines in detail basic issues of the reform of the Italian bicameral system in the context of constitutional reform proposed by the centre-right during the 14th term of parliament. The author describes thoroughly the concepts of reform of the Senate of the Republic, which has acquired the name of 'ideal duplicator' of the Chamber of Deputies, and criticizes the concept of Italian bicameralism which favours uniformity (rather than diversity) of both chambers in respect of their composition and functions, and which has led to almost complete elimination of its role of representing territorial autonomic communities.
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