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A few US states require or required a supermajority in the legislature to pass the annual budget. The issue is somewhat complicated by the fact that in some states some budgetary items/issues require a supermajority and some don't; at least as of 2015 (for which I found a survey):

States that impose a supermajority requirement to pass the budget do so in a variety of ways. Of the 10 states that have the requirement, only three—Arkansas, Nebraska and Rhode Island—impose it on budgets submitted on time and within expenditure limits. The ways these limits are set vary by state, but can include statutory or constitutional measures or enacted legislation. Others operate along a spectrum, ranging from requiring a supermajority vote for specific types of appropriations to requiring a supermajority to agree on increasing tax and expenditure limits (TELs).

California experienced the most significant change in recent years regarding supermajority requirements for passing the budget. In 2010, voters approved Proposition 25, an initiative that eliminated the two-thirds vote requirement to pass the budget. [...]

Are there any [fully independent--let's say UN recognized, so we don't into an argument about this] countries that have a supermajority provision on the entire budget? Or at least any significant historical examples of countries where this was the case for a substantial amount of time? If not, is there any country where there are substantial per-item/per-issue supermajority budget-approval requirements?

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Are there any [fully independent--let's say UN recognized, so we don't into an argument about this] countries that have a supermajority provision on the entire budget? ... If not, is there any country where there are substantial per-item/per-issue supermajority budget-approval requirements?

I think no, for these two questions.

The International Monetary Fund published a paper, Fiscal Rules at a Glance, March 2017, covering 96 countries with "details on various characteristics of rules, such as their legal basis, coverage, escape clauses, and institutional supporting arrangements, namely multi-year expenditure ceilings, independent monitoring bodies, and fiscal responsibility laws."

Of those 96 countries, only Switzerland [p. 73] has a supermajority rule, and only as an escape clause. The budget is required, since 2003, to be balanced.

Escape clause: Government can approve by supermajority a budget deviating from the rule in "exceptional circumstances."


Presumably, other counties did not meet the requirements for this paper; though any country with a supermajority requirement should have qualified.

A fiscal rule is a long-lasting constraint on fiscal policy through numerical limits on budgetary aggregates. This implies that boundaries are set for fiscal policy which cannot be frequently changed. However, the demarcation lines of what constitutes a fiscal rule are not always clear. For this dataset and paper, we followed the following principles:

  • Only rules with targets fixed in legislation and fiscal arrangements for which the targets can only be revised on a low-frequency basis (e.g., as part of the electoral cycle) and binding for at least three years are considered as fiscal rules. Medium-term budgetary frameworks or expenditure ceilings that provide multi-year projections but can be changed annually are not considered to be fiscal rules.
  • We only consider rules that set numerical targets on aggregates that capture a large share of public finances and at a minimum cover the central government level. Thus, rules for subnational governments or fiscal sub-aggregates are not included here.
  • We focus on de jure arrangements and not to what degree rules have been adhered to in practice.
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The old parliament in Sweden basically required this (it was composed of representatives from the three components of society: the clerical, the feudal and the agriculture.) Two of them had to agree how to handle something but : the king was the only one who could propose decisions.

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