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Democratic Consolidation in Eastern Europe Volume 1: Institutional Engineering$
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Jan Zielonka

Print publication date: 2001

Print ISBN-13: 9780199244089

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: November 2003

DOI: 10.1093/0199244081.001.0001

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Constitutionalism as a Vehicle for Democratic Consolidation in Romania

Constitutionalism as a Vehicle for Democratic Consolidation in Romania

Chapter:
(p.212) 8 Constitutionalism as a Vehicle for Democratic Consolidation in Romania
Source:
Democratic Consolidation in Eastern Europe Volume 1: Institutional Engineering
Author(s):

Renate Weber

Publisher:
Oxford University Press
DOI:10.1093/0199244081.003.0008

Describes how constitutionalism contributed to the democratic consolidation in post‐communist Romania. The author emphasizes the fact that Romania could hardly be described as having a constitutional tradition, since none of the previous regimes developed a tradition of observing their constitutions. Therefore, it may seem questionable whether the post‐communist constitution could have a significant impact on democratic consolidation in Romania. Nevertheless, in 1990, the constitutionalization process was the main focus of the new political elite. This chapter describes what kind of political reforms have been adopted in order to improve the constitution and avoid problems resulting from its ambiguity. It shows how the weaknesses of the current Constitution have paradoxically played an important role in bolstering Romanian civil society. The author prescribes several constitutional amendments that could transform the Romanian Constitution into a viable basis for democracy in the country.

Keywords:   civil society, constitution drafting, constitutional tradition, constitutionalism, democracy, democratic consolidation, political elite, post‐communism, Romania

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