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Russias Constitutional Project and Prospects for the Future

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Chapter Summary

The challenges, compromises and setbacks experienced in the Russian constitutional project, some of which were elaborated in this chapter. Drafters of the United States (US) Constitution confronted strong sectional differences over slavery, the clash of large versus small states, and federal versus state jurisdictions. The constitution that emerged was the product of a protracted, sometimes conflict-ridden process. Perhaps more analogous cases are presented by Germany and Japan, states that had only limited experience with constitutional democracy prior to 1945. Germany and Japan shared a legacy of nationalistic, authoritarian regimes defeated in war, and constitutional systems imposed by occupying forces of foreign powers. The stabilizing influence of the American military, combined with political pressure for democratic reform and economic assistance was critical to the successful transformation of both countries. Neither India nor Russia had an occupying power to maintain order, or assist in drafting constitutions or creating democratic institutions.

Keywords: constitutional project; democratic reform; federal law; Germany; India; Japan; Russia; United States (US)



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