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Government, parliament and lawmaking in Poland 1997-2001

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This paper examines the process of law-making in Poland during the 1997-2001 and 2001-2005 legislative terms. The analysis focuses on the initiation, amendment and finalisation stages of the legislative process within both the government and parliament and considers the boundary, content, temporal and information rules that shape this process. Within government, the preparation of, and decision-making on bills to be submitted to parliament are characterised by a dominance of ministerial law-making strategies, with a very limited coordinating capacity for the core executive (that is, the cabinet, the prime minister and the institutions that serve them). Within parliament, the government possesses weak agenda control and few formal means of defending its legislation against rival bills and amendments. There is some evidence to suggest that this decentralised legislative setting is one of the key drivers behind legislative growth and instability.

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