President of the French Senate
| President of the French Senate |
The President of the Senate is the head of the Senate, the upper house of the French Parliament.
He is the third state figure in the order of precedence, after the President of the Republic and the Prime Minister, and before the Speaker of the National Assembly, the lower house of Parliament. As such, he has significant power of appointment.
In the Senate, he chairs the plenary sessions and can influence the legislative procedure. He chairs the Senate office and the Conference of Presidents, responsible for the organization of legislative work. The presidency of the Senate is nicknamed the "plateau".
The role of the President is to represent the Senate and to direct the debates of the assembly. He chairs the Conference of Presidents (which notably brings together the presidents of political groups and committees), responsible for setting the agenda for plenary sittings. It must be consulted by the President of the Republic when the latter wishes to dissolve the National Assembly or to implement exceptional powers (Article 16 of the Constitution)
The President of the Senate assumes the interim in the event of the vacancy of the Presidency of the Republic (but without the right to resort to the referendum, to dissolve the National Assembly or to request a revision of the Constitution). This interim period is then exercised until the investiture of the newly elected President of the Republic (Article 7 of the Constitution) 5. This situation has arisen twice: in 1969, after the resignation of Charles de Gaulle, and in 1974, after the death of Georges Pompidou; in both cases, the interim was provided by Alain Poher. During this interim, the President of the Senate is the first personage of the State in the protocol order.
The President of the Senate appoints:
- three of the nine members of the Constitutional Council;
- two of the eight personalities qualified in the Superior Council of the Magistrature;
- two of the seven members of the Electronic Communications and Postal Regulatory Authority;
- one of the seven members of the regulatory authority for railway activities;
- one of the three qualified personalities of the Autorité des marchés financiers;
- three of the seven members of the Conseil supérieur de l'audiovisuel (whose role is to regulate the various electronic media in France, such as radio and television);
- two of the nine members of the High Council for Education;
- one of the five commissioners of the Nuclear Safety Authority.
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|Alain Poher||2 October 1968||2 October 1992|