G. Gerapetritis: The constitutional consequences of the resignation of a prime minister or government
In an article in “Kathimerini”, the Minister of State George Gerapetritis returns to the issue that had arisen in Parliament during the budget debate and on the occasion of the request of the leader of the official opposition for the resignation of the Prime Minister.
It is recalled that George Gerapetritis had responded to the request of Alexis Tsipras, regarding its constitutional-technical dimension, immediately after the speech of the president of SYRIZA – Progressive Alliance, while from the side of the major opposition, George Katro responded via Twitter .
“On the last day of the budget debate, the president of SYRIZA and the leader of the official opposition demanded the resignation of the prime minister and the announcement of elections, so that the country can go to the polls. serious mistakes “, G. Gerapetritis notes in the introduction to his article and explains:
“First, the resignation of the Prime Minister does not mean the resignation of the government. If the Prime Minister resigns today, given that he leads an absolute parliamentary majority, the New Democracy Parliamentary Group must propose the new one within three days (Article 38 par. 2 of the Constitution) Therefore, the resignation of the Prime Minister does not automatically mean the resignation of the government, much less the recourse to elections, regardless of the wider political developments that may occur in this case.
Second, the resignation of the government does not cause the dissolution of Parliament and elections. Even if the main opposition leader is considered to have demanded the resignation of the government as a whole, there is no immediate recourse to elections. In such a case, the President of the Republic would invite the leaders of the parliamentary parties to a meeting with the main purpose of exploring the possibility of having a political government for the rest of the parliamentary term. It is self-evident that the political correlations of the Parliament continue, so if the parliamentary groups are kept tight we will have a New Democracy government again, since its parliamentary group is still the absolute majority. Only in the event that there is no possibility of forming a government, the Parliament will be dissolved and elections will be held by a caretaker political government of all parties in Parliament or, as a last resort, by a caretaker government with one of the presidents of the supreme courts as prime minister (article 38 par. 1, in conjunction with Article 37 (3) (c) of the Constitution).
Thirdly, we have an immediate announcement of elections only after two resignations of the government (or votes against, or one resignation and one vote against interpretation). There is no such condition in this case. But even in this case, the dissolution of Parliament and the announcement of elections is not binding but would be at the discretion of the President of the Republic, since in its judgment its composition did not ensure governmental stability. In this case, in fact, the elections are conducted by the government that has the confidence of the dissolved Parliament and not by a caretaker government (article 41 par. 1 of the Constitution). In addition, we have direct recourse to the polls in the event that a government that has received a vote of confidence requests a renewal of the popular mandate in order to address a national issue of exceptional importance (article 41 par. 2 of the Constitution) “.
And the article – intervention of the Minister of State concludes: “So simply and clearly: under the current parliamentary majorities, the resignation of the Prime Minister or the government does not mean elections. led to the formation of the (political) Papademos government. Obviously we do not all know everything. And when we do not know we are informed and discuss. Especially on issues central to the state and institutions. carte, let them consider what political discounts mean in the fundamental law of the state “.
Source From: Capital