Giacomo Delledonne

Head of State Functions and Constitutional Integration: The Role of the Federal President of Germany according to Scholarly Analyses and the Case Law of the Federal Constitutional Court

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The essay looks into some defining features of the Federal President, the head of state of the Federal Republic of Germany. In doing so, it builds on two recent judgments of the Federal Constitutional Court - which contain interesting assumptions about the presidential role - and it makes resort to comparison with the Italian President. The analysis shows that the Federal President is mainly supposed - even beyond the letter of the Constitution - to act as a unifying force, rather than being involved in day-by-day politics and the relationship between the legislative and executive branches. His role has often been described by extensively relying on Rudolf Smend's doctrine of constitutional integration. By now, however, are somehow a matter of controversy.

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