Great National Assembly

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Great National Assembly
Marea Adunare Naţională
Communist Romania (1948-1989)
Type
Type
History
Established 1948
Disbanded 1989
Preceded by Romanian: Reprezentanţa Naţionalǎ1 (Adunarea Deputaţilor2)
Succeeded by Parliament of Romania (Chamber of Deputies and the Senate)
Seats 369
Elections
open single party list
Meeting place
Palatul Camerei Deputatilor1.jpg
Palatul Adunǎrii Deputaţilor
Footnotes
1the name under which the Parliament of Romania was defined by the 1866 and 1923 Constitutions;
2after the war the Constitution of 1923 was reestablished; due to the communist occupation of the country the Senate was suspended;

The Great National Assembly (Romanian: Marea Adunare Naţională; MAN) was the legislature of the Socialist Republic of Romania (known as the Romanian People's Republic before 1965). After the overthrow of Communism in Romania in December 1989, the National Assembly was replaced by a bicameral parliament, made up of the Chamber of Deputies and the Senate.

The Great National Assembly was elected every four years and each of its members represented 60,000 citizens. Despite this, like all other Communist legislatures, the Assembly was a rubber stamp which helped perpetuate the illusion of democracy.[1]

Powers[edit]

Its role is given by article 43 of the 1965 Constitution of Romania and it includes 24 powers, which range from changing the constitution to the naming and deposing of the Supreme Commander of the Romanian Army. The resolutions required a simple majority to be passed through.[1]

The Assembly convened twice a year for ordinary sessions and for extraordinary sessions as many times as required by the State Council or by at least one third of the members of the Assembly. It elected its own chairmen and four deputies to preside each session.[1]

Formally, the MAN gained in power over time: the 1948 Constitution (article 39) grants it just eight powers;[2] the 1952 Constitution (article 24), 10.[3]

Voters were presented with a single slate of candidates from the Socialist Democracy and Unity Front (known as the People's Democratic Front from 1947 to 1968 and the Socialist Unity Front from 1968 to 1980), which was dominated by the Communist Party. Since the Front vetted all candidates for office, the PCR effectively predetermined the composition of the Assembly.[4]

On paper, it was the highest level of state power in Romania, and all other state organs were subordinate to it. In practice, like all other Communist legislatures, it did little more than give legal sanction to decisions already made by the Communist Party.

When the Assembly was not in session, some of its powers were exercised by the State Council, such as setting guidelines for the law and supervising the local councils. It could also issue governmental regulations in lieu of law. If such regulation was not approved by the GNA at its next session, it was considered revoked. In emergencies, the State Council assumed the Assembly's powers to control the budget and economic plan, appoint and dismiss ministers and justices of the Supreme Court, mobilize the armed forces and declare war.

1980 elections[edit]

According to the official results of the March 9, 1980, election, which elected 369 deputies, 99.99% of the registered voters cast their votes. Of them, 98.52% voted for the official candidates, 1.48% voted against and just 44 votes were declared invalid.[1]

192 seats of the Assembly were occupied by women and 47 seats belonged to national minorities (mainly Hungarians and Germans).[1]

Presidents of the Great National Assembly[edit]

The numbering continues from the old Assembly of Deputies presidents.

No.
lower
house
No. Name Portrait Born-Died Took office Left office Party
Great National Assembly
1948 - 1989
41 1 Gheorghe Apostol Gheorghe Apostol.jpg 1913 - 2010 7 April 1948 11 June 1948 PMR
42 2 Constantin Agiu Constantin Agiu.jpg 1891 - 1961 11 June 1948 27 December 1948 PMR
43 3 Constantin Pârvulescu Constantin Pirvulescu.jpg 1895 - 1992 27 December 1948 5 July 1949 PMR
44 4 Dumitru Petrescu Dumitru Petrescu.jpg 1906 - 1969 5 July 1949 28 December 1949 PMR
45 5 Alexandru Drǎghici Alexandru Drăghici.jpg 1913 - 1993 28 December 1949 26 January 1950 PMR
(44) (4) Dumitru Petrescu Dumitru Petrescu.jpg 1906 - 1969 26 January 1950 29 May 1950 PMR
46 6 Constantin Doncea Constantin Doncea.jpg 1904 - 1973 29 May 1950 6 September 1950 PMR
(41) (1) Gheorghe Apostol Gheorghe Apostol.jpg 1913 - 2010 6 September 1950 5 April 1951 PMR
47 7 Ion Vincze Ion Vinte.jpg 1910 - 1996 5 April 1951 26 March 1952 PMR
(41) (1) Gheorghe Apostol Gheorghe Apostol.jpg 1913 - 2010 26 March 1952 6 June 1952 PMR
48 8 Gheorghe Stoica Gheorghe Stoica.jpg 1900 - 1976 2 June 1952 30 November 1952 PMR
(43) (3) Constantin Pârvulescu Constantin Pirvulescu.jpg 1895 - 1992 23 January 1953 5 March 1961 PMR
49 9 Ştefan Voitec Stefan Voitec1.jpg 1900 - 1984 20 March 1961 28 March 1974 PMR/PCR
50 10 Miron Constantinescu Miron Constantinescu.jpg 1917 - 1974 28 March 1974 18 July 1974 PCR
51 11 Nicolae Giosan No image.svg 1921 - 1990 26 July 1974 12 December 1989 PCR

References[edit]

  1. ^ a b c d e Richard Staar, Communist Regimes in Eastern Europe (4th revised edition, 1984), Hoover Institution, Stanford University. pg. 193-194
  2. ^ 1948 Constitution of Romania
  3. ^ 1952 Constitution of Romania
  4. ^ Sergiu Verona. "Government and Politics".  This article incorporates text from this source, which is in the public domain.