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Roughly speaking, article 49.3 of the French constitution allows the government to pass a law without an explicit vote in the legislative assembly by "committing government's responsibility". The procedure is that the law passes without a vote unless a motion of no confidence in the government is adopted (by vote in the assembly) within a certain (fairly short) time frame.

If I'm not mistaken, the Romanian constitution has a similar provision in its article 114, and the constitution of Moldavia also has one like that in its article 106a. E.g. the latter reads:

Article 106a. Assumption of responsibility by the Government

(1) The Government may assume responsibility before the Parliament upon a programme of activity, a general policy statement, or a draft law.

(2) The Government shall be dismissed if a motion of censure, tabled within 3 days following the date of submission of the programme, general policy statement, or the draft law, has been passed in terms under Article 106.

(3) In the event, the Government has not been dismissed pursuant to paragraph (2), the lodged draft law shall be considered adopted, and the programme or the general policy statement shall become mandatory upon the Government.

Have any other countries adopted a similar constitutional provision?


N.B. the French article 49.3 was amended in 2008 to narrow it somewhat (limiting the number of its uses per parliamentary session), and there was also a a big power struggle in Romania in 2010 surrounding their version, with their Constitutional Court having to step in several times, but I'm not sure what came of the latter in terms of constitutional changes, if any. It seems their Constitutional Court basically hemmed in the use of article 114 to emergency circumstances. (I've asked a separate question about that.)

Also, an attempt to genericize or frame 49.3 in comparative studies was to call it the "guillotine variant of the confidence vote." The "guillotine" term is used to refer to some debate-limiting motions in the UK parliament, but that's where the similarity stops.

The similarity in more general terms of the Romanian constitution with the French one has been remarked by scholars.

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    My guess is that this is pretty rare in most healthy democracies. The only situation I can remember where something like this could happen is by activating a State of Emergency which is a fairly common article(s) in any constitution. Nonetheless even a state of emergency typically requires parliamentary approval and certain conditions to be activated. – armatita Apr 18 '19 at 13:37
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In addition to the countries you mention in your question, this provision, or something very similar, appears in a few other countries' constitutions - mostly African countries which achieved independence from France and adopted parts of the country's constitution. The only exception I'm aware of is Kazakhstan.

Kazakhstan

Article 61
7. In the case when of a draft of law submitted by the Government is not adopted, the Prime-Minister shall have the right to raise an issue of confidence in the Government at a joint session of the Chambers. Voting on this issue shall be held not earlier than within forty-eight hours from the moment of calling for a vote of confidence. If the call for a vote of no confidence does not receive the majority of votes from total number of deputies of each of Chambers, a draft of law shall be deemed adopted without voting. However, the Government may not use this right more than twice a year.

Cameroon

Article 34
4. The Prime Minister may, after the deliberations of the Council of Ministers, commit the responsibility of the Government before the National Assembly on the adoption of a bill. In such case, the bill may be considered adopted, except where a motion of censure tabled within the next 24 (twenty-four) hours is passed under the conditions provided for in the preceding paragraph.

Mauritania

Article 75
The Prime Minister, after deliberation of the Council of Ministers, engages the responsibility of the Government before the National Assembly on the vote of a text. In this case, this text is considered adopted, except if a motion of censure, deposited in the following twenty-four hours, is voted within the conditions specified in the first paragraph of this Article.

Burkina Faso

Article 116
The Prime Minister can, after deliberation of the Council of Ministers, engage the responsibility of the Government before the Assembly on the adoption of a text. In this case, this text is considered adopted except if a motion of censure, deposited within the twenty-four hours which follow, is adopted in the conditions specified in the paragraphs above.

Chad

Article 137
The Prime Minister can, after deliberation of the Council of Ministers, engage the responsibility of the Government before the National Assembly on the vote of a text.

In this case, the text is considered adopted, except if a motion of censure, deposited in the twenty-four [24] hours which follow[,] is voted within the conditions provided for in paragraph two (2) of this Article.

Niger

Article 107
The Prime Minister can, after deliberation of the Council of Ministers, engage the responsibility of the Government before the National Assembly by posing the question of confidence on the vote of a text. The text is considered adopted if it receives the absolute majority of the votes.

Mali

Article 78
The Prime Minister may, after deliberation of the Council of Ministers, pledge the responsibility of the Government before the National Assembly on the vote of a text. In this case, the text shall be considered as adopted, unless a motion of censure, filed in the following twenty four hours, is passed.

Central African Republic

Article 55
The Prime Minister, Head of Government, can, after deliberation by the Council of Ministers, engage the responsibility of the Government before the National Assembly on the vote of a text.

In this case, the text is considered as adopted, unless if a motion of censure deposited within the twenty-four (24) hours which follow, is voted within the conditions established in Article 53 above.

Senegal

Article 86
The Prime Minister can, after deliberation of the Council of Ministers, engage the responsibility of the Government before the National Assembly on the vote of a bill of the law of finance. In this case, the bill is considered as adopted, unless if a motion of censure, deposited within the twenty-four hours which follow, is voted within the conditions of the preceding paragraph. The Prime Minister can, also, resort to this procedure for one other bill or proposal of law per session.

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