The Government of Spain
Spain is a parliamentary monarchy. Chief of state is the hereditary monarch and the head of government is the President of the Government. The President designates the cabinet which is called the Council of Ministers. Spain is also has a bicameral legislative branch. The General Courts or National Assembly or Las Cortes Generales consists of the Senate or Senado and the Congress of Deputies or Congreso de los Diputados (CIA World Factbook). In order for legislation to pass the two chambers must agree. Proposals of laws issued by the Senate are discussed at Congress in a Plenary Session in order to be accepted or tabled veto or be amended. The proposal of the law passes to the study of a Commission. The Commission writes a short text about the proposal which will be discussed and voted in Plenary Session. Once the text is approved by the Congress proposal of law is submitted by its President to the Senate. Senate may then accept, block a veto or make amendments. If Senate rejects the text by an absolute majority then the text goes back to Congress which can at that point either approve the bill or proposal of law by the same majority required at the Senate or Congress can wait for two months and approve the text by a simple majority. In both cases the text is the one approved initially by Congress. If Senate introduces amendments, Congress only has to accept or reject them by a simple majority. If the text is accepted without any modifications then the text is ready to be sanctioned by the King (U.S. Library of Congress). Electoral System
A party must obtain a minimum of 3 percent of the vote in order to qualify for parliamentary representation. Each province is to have a minimum of two seats in the Congress of Deputies, plus one additional seat for every 144,500 inhabitants or fraction over 70,000 inhabitants (U.S. Library of Congress). Members of Congress are elected by popular vote on block lists...
Cited: CIA World Factbook. "Spain (as amended until April 21, 2005)", URL (consulted May 2005): http://www.cia.gov/cia/publications/factbook/geos/sp.html#Govt
Stuart, Paul. 2004. "Spanish Government Admits Defeat (March 15, 2004)", BBC News, URL (consulted May 2005): http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/world/europe/3511280.stm
U.S. Library of Congress. "A Country Study: Spain (as amended until December 1990)", URL (consulted May 2005): http://lcweb2.loc.gov/cgibin/query/r?frd/cstdy:@field(DOCID+es0009)
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