№ 3, 2018
The Turkish presidential and parliamentary elections that took place June 24, 2018, marked the completion of the long-term process of institutional transformations, which led to the establishment of presidentialism. On the basis of the analysis of the dynamics of constitutional presidential powers, the author describes the evolution of the Turkish institution of presidency and peculiarities of the country’s parliamentary, premier-presidential and presidential systems of government. In order to trace the logic of institutional changes, she analyzes party and electoral systems, seats distribution in parliament, and the role of the army.
Since the birth of the Turkish Republic, the country has adopted three constitutions, has survived through four coups d’état (including two “post- modern” ones) and has changed 64 governments. Until 2007 Turkey had a parliamentary system that went through two phases: a stable one-party government and inefficient fragmented pluralism with coalition and minority governments. Highly fragmented party system, inefficient government and regular intervention of the army into politics nullified advantages of parliamentarism. All constitutional changes in Turkey came into being as a reaction to crises and were conducted in a “layered” manner, when new rules did not replace the old ones, but rather complemented them. Turkey preserved all presidential powers (which were already rather substantial) established by the 1982 Constitu- tion and introduced nationwide presidential elections, thereby transforming its government system from parliamentary to premier-presidential with a strong president. The following transition to a presidential system implied further extension of presidential powers. The author concludes that the volume of the presidential powers is big enough so that Turkey should be classified as super-presidential system.
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