According to the French press, back on Feb 2

The members of the Social Affairs commission had been meeting since Monday morning to examine the government’s proposed pension reform and the 7,000 amendments proposed by the opposition.

By Wednesday evening's deadline, they had gone through two articles and not reached article 7, the key part of the reform, that proposes raising the minimum retirement age from 62 to 64 years old.

A few minutes before the 8 pm deadline, with 4,997 amendments left, commission president Fadila Khattabi, of President Emmanuel Macron’s Renaissance party, ended the session with “regret” that most of the text had not been examined, despite 28 hours of debate.

But that article doesn't provide any comparative context for that 7,000 amendments number. And TBH I'm not sure if it's the correct/final number, because PBS more briefly reported on Feb 6 that on that same law:

More than 20,000 amendments have been proposed by opposition lawmakers — mostly by the left-wing Nupes coalition.

So, is it a record or was there a law proposal with more amendments introduced? (Let's say since 1958, because the French parliament seems to [nowadays] report stats only beginning with this date, when the 5th French Republic officially commenced.)

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    For those thrilled at the artful use of legislative subterfuge to block dastardly governmental overreach... is this very different, functionally, from the much-vilified US filibuster? Commented Apr 26, 2023 at 21:17
  • @ItalianPhilosophers4Monica It's an equivalent to the filibuster in the sense that the main aim in introducing a bazillion amendements is to grind the process to a halt and force the government to negotiate. Perhaps the biggest difference though is the government can override it with Art.49-3 by putting it up to a vote of no-confidence (which the government has never lost). Commented Apr 27, 2023 at 11:06
  • @AmiralPatate: yeah but since 2008 the number of uses outside budget matters is limited to one per parliamentary session. The US filibuster can also be bypassed on select issues. Commented Apr 27, 2023 at 12:37
  • OTOH the French also have 44.3 "blocked vote" (vote bloqué), which allows the government to block votes on amendments (and in fact pre-select them). That also has been used for [this] pension reform, but in the Senate. I think uses of 44.3 are not so limited. Back in the early de Gaulle years 44.3 was used a lot (dozens of times per session), but I'm not sure if that was reformed in any way since. Commented Apr 27, 2023 at 12:42
  • Anyhow, 44.3 is probably less relevant generally since on non-constitutional/non-"organic" matters, the National Assembly has "the last word" in France, i.e. can override the Senate. Commented Apr 27, 2023 at 12:49

1 Answer 1


I believe the record is still held by the 2006 energy sector bill. Le Monde reported at the time:

In the parliamentary game, the centerpiece remains the amendment. With the energy bill, a record is about to be broken: already 137,449 amendments announced, 24 hours before the deadline for submission. That is a theoretical production of at least 10 million pages, reaching nearly 1,000 meters high and weighing nearly 50 tons. The previous record was held by the bill on postal activities, in January 2005, with 14,888 amendments filed.

The eventual number of amendments submitted was 137,665, but the government eventually reached an agreement with opposition parties to avoid having to consider every amendment in return for not using article 49.3 of the Constitution to pass the measure.

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    Was there any study how much any of these 137,449 amendments differed between themselves? Or how they are distributed on the different political entities? Commented Apr 26, 2023 at 21:18
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    @Trilarion 40,000 amendments for the Socialist Party, 90,000 for the Communists according to ina.fr/ina-eclaire-actu/…
    – Gwen
    Commented Apr 27, 2023 at 8:17

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