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France and Germany are two of the most powerful nations in Europe At one time bitter rivals recently these two nations have come to a time of cooperation Both nations are members of the European Union EU both are proactive and modern states with strong economies This paper will discuss the similarities and differences of the French and German political systems Areas to be discussed will be the branches of government that is to say the executive legislative and judiciary levels of government Their will also be brief discussions on the history of the development of the present states of France and Germany OVERVIEW OF FRENCH POLITICAL SYSTEM The country of France is governed by a presidential republic with a centralized national government capital Paris The French Republic has been living under the same constitutional regime since 1958 with the introduction of the Fifth Republic as introduced by President Charles Degaulle The constitutional amendments increased the powers of the president and decreased the control of the parliament More on the roles of the executive branch and legislative branch in later sections With a bicameral parliament legislature powers are divided between the National Assembly and the Senate Frances judicial functions are controlled by the Supreme Court of Appeals Cour de Cassation France is divided into 22 adminstrative divisions known as regions these regions are illustrated in the following map Figure 1 httpwwwfotwcamiscfrprogif OVERVIEW OF GERMAN POLITICAL SYSTEM The country of Germany is governed by a parliamentary republic with a centralized national government capital Berlin The Federal Republic of Germany has been living under their constitution known as Basic Law since October 1990 though the constitution was introduced in Western Germany in 1949 and then became the constitution of the united Germany Like France Germany has a bicameral legislative branch with the excusive branch represented by the President chief of state and the Chancellor head of government The German judicial branch is represented
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