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Korea Observer Vol 55, No 2.jpg
SCOPUS 학술저널

Is a “Responsible Prime Minister” Impossible under Presidentialism? The Weak Constitutional Premiership and the Political Conditions for an Exception to Emerge in South Korea

Is a “Responsible Prime Minister” Impossible under Presidentialism? The Weak Constitutional Premiership and the Political Conditions for an Exception to Emerge in South Korea

This paper explores under what political conditions a “responsible prime minister” can emerge in a presidential system, focusing on South Korea after the 1987 democratization. Under presidentialism, premiers lack the constitutional resources to make themselves into a “responsible prime minister” independent from the president. Even such political resources as high popularity, deep trust from the president, and influence over the legislature are not enough to make them a “responsible prime minister”. Thus, most premiers remain a highly compliant subordinate of their president in Korea. By contrast, in a multi-party system Kim Dae-jung (DJ) sought to invite a third party, the United Liberal Democrats, into the “DJP Alliance” in order to win a highly competitive presidential election and therefore had to yield the prime-ministerial post to the head of the coalition partner party, Kim Jong-pil (JP). Under these political conditions, JP could be a “responsible prime minister” as an exception.

Ⅰ. Introduction

Ⅱ. Theoretical Discussions

Ⅲ. The Korean Prime Ministers after the 1987 Democratization

Ⅳ. The Possibility of “Responsible Prime Minister” in Korea: The JP Case

V. Conclusion

References

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