Ukraine will have an early election

Well, it did not take long to learn the answer to my question. Yes, Ukraine will have an early election, as President Volodomyr Zelenskyy announced on 19 May in his inaugural address. And thus, no, the current electoral system will not be replaced just yet.

The election is expected to be in July, a scenario I already discussed in the earlier post.

In the context of all this, today (20 May) the Prime Minister, Volodymyr Groysman, announced his resignation.

There had been a report last week that a dissolution of the coalition in the assembly would prevent the new president from calling an early election (because it would buy the assembly time to attempt to find, under terms of the constitution, an alternative premier they can agree on). But evidently not.

6 thoughts on “Ukraine will have an early election

  1. How common in semi-presidential systems is it that a president (newly elected or otherwise) can dissolve the parliament at will, particularly in the seeming absence of a no confidence motion or loss of supply?

    Are there limits on repeated dissolutions in most countries? In countries that don’t have such limits, have their ever been cases of an elected president repeatedly dissolving parliament in an attempt to get a favorable legislature?

    I’m not opposed to a newly elected president being able to dissolve parliament once, but it seems like it opens a lot of doors to potential abuse.

    • French President François Mitterrand dissolved the National Assembly shortly after taking office in 1981, and again following his re-election in 1988. Back then presidential and parliamentary election cycles were not synchronized, and both instances the center-right parties opposed to Mitterrand’s Socialist Party controlled the Assembly at the time the presidential election took place.

      • Indeed, the dissolutions by Mitterrand were the inspiration for an entire chapter of my dissertation (well, the 1988 case came when the dissertation was almost done), which later led to my 1995 APSR article on the importance of the timing of elections in presidential or semi-presidential systems.

        Also inspirational was a book chapter I had read about the Chilean election of 1995.

    • Only some presidencies (in semi-presidential systems) have any power to dissolve parliament, and with few exceptions, it is limited. The French limit is no second dissolution within a year, for example.

      • I uploaded a table that appeared in an article of mine from 2005, showing the formal rules of inter-branch relations in semi-presidential systems.

        I can’t claim it is still accurate–2005 was a while ago! But it will give you an idea. Of 27 cases I surveyed, ten allow dissolution at least under some circumstances. Five of those seem to have no restrictions on the authority, while the others limit it to once a year (France, Mali) or have other limitations on use. Several others allow dissolution, but not at the president’s discretion.

  2. Pingback: Ukraine honeymoon election today | Fruits and Votes

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