THE SEJM AND THE SENAT UNDER THE PROPOSAL FOR AMENDMENT OF POLAND'S CONSTITUTION OF 1997 (Sejm i Senat w projektach zmian konstytucji z 1997 r.)
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The article provides a review of legislative proposals offered to Poland's Constitution, concerning the Sejm and the Senate matters that have not been enacted into law (i.e. constitutional amendment bills submitted in 1997, 2006, 2007 and 2008). The proposals, providing for partial changes, related to abolition or limitation of parliamentary immunity (including both non-liability and inviolability of MPs), as well as restricting of the right of persons with criminal record to be elected as members of parliament. The amendment of Article 99 of the Constitution, passed in 2009, is also described. Central part of the article deals with the origins of the first, and more comprehensive, bill of 19 February 2010 on the amendment of the Constitution as well as its substantive suggestions in relation parliamentary matters. This concerns the following issues: 1) reduction in the number of Deputies and Senators, 2) constitutional regulation of the principle proportional elections of Deputies to the Sejm, 3) change in the procedure for election of Senators, 4) inclusion of former Presidents of the Republic of Poland in the composition of the Senate, 5) change in the scope of application of the principle of incompatibility of exercise of the mandate with performing other offices, 6) limitation of immunity of Deputies, 7) reduction of the level of votes (majority) required to override the legislative veto of the President of the Republic, 8) specifying the time-limit for an a priori review by the Constitutional Tribunal to a particular extent, 9) abolition of individual political accountability of minister to the Sejm.
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