Asian studiesPolitical studies

The national assembly of the republic of Korea

Park, Chan Wook

In the authoritarian era, the Korean National Assembly was a fairly weak form of marginal legislature. In the early years of democratic development, the legislature became a weak form of vulnerable legislature. Presently, however, it is a fairly strong form of marginal legislature. The constitution authorises the legislature to check the executive branch. Elections have become increasingly free and fair. Interest group pluralism steadily deepens. Nevertheless, the National Assembly operates in an environment where political culture is not conducive to compromise politics and the bureaucracy is not quite responsive to the legislature. Political parties are not responsible, nor is the party system stable. Looking inside the legislature, there exists a serious gap between its formality and actual workings. Formal rules, the committee system and staff service are reasonably well arranged. Yet they do not function effectively. Legislative members are potentially competent, but in actuality inexperienced in their legislative work.

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