So, Peru’s system is a hybrid

I’ve been trying to get the point across for years: Peru does not have a (pure) presidential system. It is a semi-presidential system.

Peruvian Prime Minister Ana Jara was forced to step down after losing a vote of confidence in Congress on Monday… President Ollanta Humala must now select a new prime minister and cabinet.

Via the BBC. My emphasis.

Also, “It is the first time in half a century that Peru’s Congress has deposed a prime minister.” But not using a power does not mean the power does not exist–and, potentially, affect the political process.

7 thoughts on “So, Peru’s system is a hybrid

  1. How did that come to be that Peru has a Prime Minister that has to have the support of the legislative branch? How come other Latin American countries don’t imitate the Peruvian system? Is the Peruvian Semi Presidentialism like the French one?

  2. Since 1991 the Colombian Congress can also exert “Political Control” over cabinet ministers by staging debates over their policies and passing no confidence motions.

    • Yes, Mauricio, but there is neither a prime minister nor a “government formation” process. Peru has both.

      In Presidents and Assemblies, John Carey and I actually classified systems with any censure provision alongside an elected president who also has power to dismiss ministers as “president-parliamentary”. We expressed doubt about the term, semi-presidential, and preferred to retire it.

      In more recent works, I have accepted the term, semi-presidential, and considered president-parliamentary to be one of two subtypes (along with premier-presidential, in which there is no constitutional power for the president to dismiss cabinet ministers). This is the typology that Robert Elgie uses as well, and so do several other authors.

      Neither Robert nor I would consider the Colombian system president-parliamentary, and therefore it is not semi-presidential, either. But Peru clearly qualifies, even if the “censure” provisions are apparently not actually invoked very often.

  3. Actually, does someone know how it is that early congressional elections were held in 2001? I can’t find any reliable or clear source saying that there were two successful censure votes in 2000, and according to the reports around the recent censure vote, there hasn’t been one for half a century.

    • The 2000-01 period in Peru was the collapse of Fujimori’s government. His reelection to a third term was contested, and probably not constitutional. The constitution says two terms maximum, but he argued that it did not apply to his first term from 1990, because the constitution was not in effect till 1993 (he had used the army to dissolve the existing congress and call a constitutional convention). The main opposition candidate boycotted the second round, and eventually Fujumori resigned under pressure and early elections for both president and congress were called. In other words, it was not a regular constitutional process that caused this sequence of elections.

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