Valoasan Confederation of Provinces

From TEPwiki, Urth's Encyclopedia
Jump to navigation Jump to search
This page (or section) is a work in progress by its author(s) and should not be considered final.
Valoasan Confederation of Provinces
15th communion
Type
TypeLower house of the National Chamber of Hvaloaszna
History
Founded8 August 1931; 91 years ago (1931-08-08)
Preceded byConfederation of Peoples
Leadership
First MinisterStijn Dijkstra, Community of the People
Since 1 September 2021
SpeakerClara Axisa, Community of the People
Since 1 September 2021
Contrarian VoiceXavier Maeson, National Union Party
Since 1 September 2021
Structure
Seats77 seats
Confederation of Provinces - Group.svg
Political groupsGovernment (46)
  •   Community of the People (22)[a]
  •   Akuan Party (15)
  •   For the Farmers (9)[b]

Opposition (31)

Length of term6 years
Elections
Voting systemAppointment by Province Governments
Meeting place
2.8.2018 Falkenstein Dorfstädter Straße 8.JPG
Former hall of the Chamber of Commerce, Tromsømore


The Valoasan Confederation of Provinces, informally addressed by the abbreviation CoP, is the lower chamber of the National Chamber of Hvaloaszna and lower house of the legislature of Hvaloaszna. It has held this role since the body replaced the previously instated Confederation of Peoples in 1931. As well as being notable for thus being created after the Confederation of Servants - the upper house of the Valoasan legislature. it exists as one of the only lower houses of a national legislature to be elected through an indirect method, with the direct election of the members of Provincial Governments allowing the legislature to be appointed based upon the results of democratic elections within each of the seven Provinces.

Following the failure of the First Constitution of Hvaloaszna to create a system accommodating to the radically different political and economic landscapes of the three islands that make up the nation of Hvaloaszna, the structure, organization and composition of the Confederation of Provinces was formulated and laid-out in Article 2 of the Second Constitution of Hvaloaszna. as the second of the colloquially known "Gunpoint Articles", referring to the Articles heavily amended to appease armed protest groups in the three easternmost Provinces, comprising the island of Kabeiland. As dictated by the document, the CoP is comprised of 77 Representatives, with each Province able to allocate 11 seats, regardless of their geographical size or population. As these representatives are all appointed and the democratic process functions through indirect means, the system in place to appoint members of the Confederation of Provinces is notably different dependant on the individual Constitutions of each Province. Despite this, following the 1941 Constitutional Amendment, the unified procedure of automatically appointing a member of each party for every 10% of seats they control within the Provincial Legislature has been instituted and enforced within each of the seven Provinces.

While not an unheard of quantity of seats. the CoP has become notable for having less total seats than any of the legislatures within the Provinces, with a majority of the subnational entitles having legislatures of 90 seats, with the three exceptions in Kabeiland each exceeding 82 seats. While a number of attempts have been made to amend the Constitution in order to increase the total seat count, debates over how such seats should be awarded, both amongst the Provinces - in accordance with debates of the policy of equal representation of Provinces - as well as in terms of the laws on legislative appointments, have almost entirely stalled such suggestions into unviability. In this context, many point to the perceived weakness of the federal government as a body as to the reason such a change has not been undertaken, with the increased threshold for bills which supersede provincial law and the ability of the Confederation of Servants to veto any bill without express reason exacerbating the internal divisions within Hvaloaszna and empowering legislature on a provincial level as a more significant force for change for internal issues which are not expressly enacted on a federal level.

While having such limitations, the CoP serves an important role within the political framework of Hvaloaszna. It elects and oversees the First Minister of Hvaloaszna, the nation's head of government, and may remove them through a simple majority. It is notable that unlike most parliamentary legislatures, the body cannot be dissolved during their six year term, and is therefore tasked with voting in the next government following the removal of a head of government. As one of the two chambers of the National Chamber of Hvaloaszna, the Confederation of Provinces holds exclusive power to draft, initiate and pass federal-level legislative acts to the Confederation of Servants for approval. In addition, the body's approval is required in the approval of the federal budget, granting it considerable sway on the direction taken in the allocation of funds and thereby monetary policy.

Following a string of politically motivated violence and demonstrations having occurred in the building which housed the Confederation of Peoples, the Hall of Peace - which stands directly adjacent to the temple in which the Confederation of Servants still convene, the Confederation of Provinces currently meets and holds sessions within the former hall of the Valoasan Chamber of Commerce, located in the financial district of the capital city of Hvaloaszna, Tromsømore. While historically all official government discussions were mandated to be conducted using the Nys'tat'en language, the right for legislators to speak Vistarian or Norgsveltian within legislative sessions has been introduced during the National Union Party-led minority government in 2009. As elected following the formation of the 15th Confederation of Provinces, referred to as the 15th Communion, the First Minister of Hvaloaszna is Stijn Dijkstra, and the Speaker is Clara Axisa, both being members of the Community of the People parliamentary group. The Contrition Voice, who acts a the leader of the Opposition, is Xavier Maeson of the National Union Party. Notably reflecting the controversial flaws within Article 2 in establishing the function of the legislative body, all three of these figures were appointed by the Province of Ziltolf, with the Ziltholfer parties of the Free Social Democrats and Economy Forward making up the largest portion of their respective parliamentary groups, though notably this overrepresentation does not apply to the government as a whole to such a drastic degree. Such a reality has increased animosity between the Provinces of Kabeiland and the other two islands, with political analysts suggesting a high likelihood of legislators from the 4 Provinces outside of Kabeiland forming a unified effort against the influence gained by Kabeiland through the Second Constitution, furthering internal divisions in the country.

History

The Confederation of Provinces first convened on 8 August 1931, where the body would ratify the Second Constitution of Hvaloaszna through an Oath to conduct themselves according to the rights and duties granted to them by the document, upholding the Constitution by its and by the intention of those who wrote it. This meeting notably predated the moving of the house's affairs to the Financial District. being one of only a few votes conducted by the CoP outside their current chamber.

Foundations

Under the Crown Colony

The Confederation of Peoples

Second Constitution

The latter half of the 20th century

Following the creation of the Second Constitution and the political upheaval thereof, the newly formed Confederation of Provinces was left with the unenviable task of forming a stable and productive political landscape for which the democracy of Hvaloaszna could rest on - a task which the Community of Peoples before it had failed under the weight of internal divides. While contemporary analysis of the era primarily asserts the Second Constitution as necessary in the maintaining of the nation as a singular entity, in it's wake lay several questions unanswered and sacrifices made to controversy amongst those that had to bear them. The Akuan Party, who had enjoyed considerable political sway from their renown as the party who fought for Valoasan independence and continually championed national unity, remained the party of federal governance until their ability to consistently sway the majority ran out in 1943 on the back of growing disapproval of the federal administration and it's failure to combat the underlying issues of crime, social unrest and the often incompatible economic systems present on each of the three islands.

While the Akuan Party successfully maintained its core support base on the central island, its success waned overall, as especially those in the East turned further away from the leftist ideals of the Akuan Party, having already proven inexorably opposed to socialistic economic policy and the adoption of the Vestravan model propagated in the west of the country. In this power vacuum arose the National Association of Conservatives and Traditionalists (NACT), acting as the predecessor to the modern National Unity Party. For the rest of the 1930s, extending until political turmoil returned in the late 1970s, NACT and the Akuan Party formed a relatively stable de facto two-party system, with the formations of broad coalitions around the two major political groups serving to establish a functional vessel for transitions of power between predominantly left-wing and predominantly centre-right governments.

While such a transition to a new more competitive national political landscape was considerably less evocative of widespread dissent than those seen before in the country, it did not arrive without lingering consequences that would prove detrimental to national stability during the times of crisis seen in the late 1970s. The failure of the Akuan Party to maintain its hold on federal power, as well as the loss of support which caused it to be challenged on such a level, created a generation far less swayed by the repute garnered by the party during the struggle for independence and period preceding the crisis of the First Constitution.

Alongside the exacerbation of infighting within both the regional branches of the Akuan Party and the ideologically broad coalition that made up the NACT, such a dissolution with the established system and its failures to deal with ongoing issues caused a rapid onset of political instability in Hvaloaszna, with the formation of governments almost impossible until the formation of a coalition between the emergent centre-left and the remaining members of the Akuan Party - now almost entirely reduced to their core demographic on the central island, owing to the breakaway of the Motherland Party in Heligstadplassen and the breaking up of the Kabeilander branch of the party along moderate-radical lines. Following the success of the Aanes government in restoring order within the country, the process of depolarization took places throughout the remainder of the 80s as well as the 90s, forming into a more competitive and balanced system of parties across the political spectrum which continued into the millennium.

Late Akuan dominance (1931-1943)

The two-party system (1943-1983)

Ny'Kato affair
Rep. Liene Rull, colloquially referred to as the "Enraged Spirit of Henerschat"

Following the formation of an Akuan Party-led majority coalition under First Minister Ny'Kato, his second ministry had proven itself more than capable of continuing the successes of the previous administration, with many of the more prolifically impactful cabinet ministers staying on to serve in the second government. However, these bright prospects were short-lived, being entirely undermined by revelations which arose in late 1974 - only a year after the government was formed. On 9 October 1974, during a scheduled public address to the Confederation of Provinces, Ny'Kato was interrupted by Liena Rull - a member of the Opposition and notable firebrand within the United Tradition Party of Henerschat. As the speech was to recognize the success of the rehabilitative approach taken to criminal justice, Rull, as an outspoken critic of the policy, was expected by some close to her to offer some heckling remarks towards the First Minister during his presentation - with Rull having previously worked alongside left-wing nationalist dissenters in the West to oppose the "lax stance on crime" taken by the administration. Instead, however, the representative was seen waiting until the First Minister offered an anecdote on his time in school before standing up, interrupting Ny'Kato by speaking over him.

Rull asserted that Ny'Kato had continued to openly tell "bold-faced lies" on his time in further education, calling the First Minister a "petulant frat boy" and accusing him of taking such a stance on crime based upon a sympathy for criminals owed to that experience. In front of the other representatives, the dissenting Henerschater produced a still image taken from a video that proceeded to be leaked to the press only hours later. The still showed the First Minister undergoing a fraternity ritual during his time at university in Skiendore, containing the performance of intimate actions with a freshly caught fish stolen from the docks that lay within walking distance of the student residence building Ny'Kato was occupying at the time. While Rull was forcibly removed from the chamber so as to allow the First Minister to continue, the uproar in the room directed all attention towards the accusation, with Ny'Kato being forced to leave the Hall as well, bombarded by questions from the press.

Entirely overshadowing the original topic at the head of the discussion, the emergent scandal - which was referred to at the time with a variety of tongue-and-cheek references, including one Anderuwallen tabloid's declaration of it as the "Affair of the Loose Rod" - began to dominate political discourse, having taken focus far away from any previous success of the government. In addition to heavy coverage by the press to an often hyperbolic degree, the scandal quickly fell out of the government's control following the resignation of long-serving Press Secretary Harald Nilsen. Having served similar roles throughout the history of the Akuan Party, as well as taking many advisory roles to Party leaders, the sudden resignation of Nilsen was a considerable blow to the party and it's reputation - especially surrounding the current scandal. In his resignation, Nilsen stated,

 
 
In my time serving this country, I have undertaken countless efforts to tackle countless difficulties. However, I have served long enough to view what is currently happening as the end of my tenure. I cannot and will not deal with this, and thus I must resign.
 

 

—Resignation letter of Harald Nilsen, 11 October 1974

While Nilsen refused to make any comment that would in any way grant or revoke credibility from the accusation, to detractors his resignation was a reaffirmation of the truth behind Rull's statement, and calls for Ny'Kato's resignation began to be drafted by the public despite the Office of the First Minister denying all allegations on October 13th. Maria Dahl, as Deputy Press Secretary, urged the press to echo a sentiment of due process when discussing accusations made which threaten the stability of the nation. While a few of the largest newspapers, most often broadsheets, complied and echoed such messages, a number of tabloid papers - headed by the National populist De Wachtpost in Henerschat - began further accusing the government of attempting to goad the press into silent compliance, with one of the editors of De Wachtpost reportedly calling First Minister Ny'Kato "a degenerate, a liar and a violator of bass if I've ever seen one".

As the public disquiet continued, political debate within the Confederation of Provinces all but halted, with Speaker Killian Reitan unable to enforce order on the representatives as members of the Opposition, including Rull, demanded solid answers from the Government on the matter rather than hiding behind the notion of a formal enquiry, leading to Reitan's resignation on the 19th, causing an emergency recess until the 25th. During the recess, public discontent only grew and the popularity of the government plummeted. Amongst members of the Akuan Party, discussions into the feasibility of Ny'Kato's continued term as leader escalated, with some expressing the notion that, even in the event some accusations are false, there will be a permenant mark on his political record that the opposition can and will use as leverage in political debates. Such a notion was concurrent with public discourse on the matter, with a number of satirical demonstrations expressing a complete loss of respect for those in government. One such example was with the proliferation of novelty whistles shaped like a variety of sea creatures, marketed as a rape deterrent, such expressing obvious implications against the First Minister. These whistles were used as a tool for demonstrators calling for Ny'Kato's resignation. with the protestors soon adopting the satirical title of "fish-rights activists" to continue the mockery of the government.

On 25 October 1974, the Confederation of Provinces returned to session, beginning with an immediate vote of no confidence in the government of Ny'Kato. While the governing coalition had achieved a majority at the creation of the 8th Communion, dissent both from the Akuan Party's coalition partners and several members within the party itself saw the vote pass, forcing the resignation of Ny'Kato from office that same day. The previous Contrarian Voice and leader of the Traditionalist Conservative Party, Erik Rutger, soon formed a minority government, appointing several centre-leaning Akuan Party defectors to cabinet positions. For her part in the taking down of the previous administration, Rull was granted the position of Minister for Justice, seeing many of the reforms taken under Akuan Party leadership being repealed or undone under her tenure. Ny'Kato himself was forced to confess the validity of the claims made against him, however was unable to be charged to the fullest extent due to the involvement of Shrinekeeper Ny'Isnzki. He was forced to pay a modest fine for Zoophilia, an amount he asked to remain undisclosed, and was formally ejected from the Akuan Party. Party members who had voted no confidence in his leadership were offered the returning of their whip, however a number refused to return to the party and continued to serve under the Rutger ministry as Independents.

Trisection of the Akuan Party (1983-1985)

Social Democrat era (1985-1993)

Three-party plus system (from 1993)

21st century

Members

Political groups

The political groups of the Confederation of Provinces act in the way national parties do in most national legislatures, with groups such as the National Union Party using such a classification in their name despite their legal status. Since the existence of such entitles was recognized constitutionally following an amendment in 1953, most parties have organized around such coalition groups, both in order to bolster their representation in the CoP and take advantage of the benefits such groups are granted by the Constitution - with registered groups entitled to operate a group fund subject to its own spending limit unaffected by the limits of individual member parties. As a result of this, of the 25 parties represented in the legislature, all but 2 are a part of one of the five legally recognized political groups. As an aspect of the Valoasan political system, political groups serve the purpose of not only making the formation of governments easier due to its more macroscopic scale. but additionally encourages the formation of political blocs based on ideology, rather than Province or Island. Currently, the only recognized group to fail this goal is the Worker's Alternative, which consists of two parties, both from the province of Heligstadplassen. Outside of such cases in which a group possesses a substantive number of seats while remaining unfeasible for it to comply with such requirements, each group is expected to have an established organizational structure; a clear, coherent set of values forming an ideological basis and the ability to represent voices from multiple parties across the 3 islands which make up Hvaloaszna. The status of groups, alongside the privileges they obtain from it, has the potential to be revoked if these requirements are not met to a reasonable degree.

Since the establishment of the 15th Communion, the groups and non-affiliates which form the Confederation of Provinces are as follows,

# Group/Party CoP Leader Position Ideology Member parties Seats in the CoP
1 CotP Community of the People Stijn Dijkstra Centre-left Social democracy
Social liberalism
Factions:
Akuanist democracy
Social conservatism
Democratic socialism
Reformism
Populism
  • Free Social Democrats
  • Social Union of Royalists
  • Forward Action!
  • For Akua: Moderate Coalition
  • Alliance for New Democracy
  • The New Liberals
  • The New Social Democrats
  • Union of Akuan Democracy
22 / 77
2 AP Akuan Party Ny'Tato Left-wing Akuanist democracy
Democratic socialism
N/A
15 / 77
3 NUP National Union Party Xavier Maeson Centre-right Liberal conservatism
Conservative liberalism
Classical liberalism
Factions:
Akuanist democracy
Green conservatism
Populism
  • Economy Forward
  • People's Party
  • Unified Tradition
  • Citizen Momentum
13 / 77
4 FtF For the Farmers Ny'Tottor Centre to centre-left Agrarianism
Environmentalism
Factions:
Social democracy
  • Green Yields
  • Sakimite Front
  • Green Brothers
  • Peace and Trees
9 / 77
5 SNL Silenced No Longer Bastijn-Jan Wielen Right-wing Minority interests
Regionalism
National populism
Factions:
National conservatism
Anti-Akuanism
Separatism
  • Homeland Union
  • Vistari People's Party
  • Conservative Front
  • Parents Against Public Drinking
  • Reason and Identity
8 / 77
6 WA Worker's Alternative Matilda Saetherian Left-wing Democratic socialism
Social nationalism
Political Akuanism
  • Motherland Party
  • New Union of People
7 / 77
7 AV Akuan Vanguard Luċija Orlan Centre Akuanist democracy
Republicanism
Economic nationalism
N/A
3 / 77

Elections and appointment

Elections are held within the Provinces as decided by the provincial constitutions. Each province has been granted the powers and duty to conduct elections as they see fit, so long as it follows some form of democratic process in which all citizens over 16 are permitted to vote, outside of extenuating circumstances. The systems used are as follows,

Province Term length Electoral method Next election
Henerschat Up to 4 years Instant runoff voting (IRV) On or before 2025
Sajaaland 3 years Single transferable vote (STV) 12 August 2024
Ziltolf Up to 5 years First-past-the-post (FPTP/SMP) On or before 2025
Haakondal Up to 4 years Proportional representation (PR) 13 August 2024
Heligstadplassen 5 years Proportional representation (PR) 13 August 2023
Ny'Salic 2 years Single transferable vote (STV) 20 January 2023
Ny'Statable 2 years Single transferable vote (STV) 20 January 2023

Notes

    •   Free Social Democrats (4)
    •   Social Union of Royalists (4)
    •   Forward Action! (3)
    •   For Akua: Moderate Coalition (3)
    •   Alliance for New Democracy (3)
    •   The New Liberals (2)
    •   The New Social Democrats (2)
    •   Union of Akuan Democracy (1)
    •   Green Yields (3)
    •   Sakimite Front (2)
    •   Green Brothers (2)
    •   Peace and Trees (2)
    •   Economy Forward (6)
    •   People's Party (4)
    •   Unified Tradition (2)
    •   Citizen Momentum (1)
    •   Homeland Union (4)
    •   Vistari People's Party (1)
    •   Conservative Front (1)
    •   Parents Against Public Drinking (1)
    •   Reason and Identity (1)
    •   Motherland Party (6)
    •   New Union of People (1)