L'absentéisme parlementaire : Diagnostic et remèdes

  • Françoise Drion


Various causes are responsible for the important absenteeism which prevails in the public sessions and committees of the legislative assemblies: the various activities to be accomplished by Representatives and
Senators outside Parliament (particularly obligations in their district and within the party) are more and more numerous and time-consuming.
However, they cannot afford to neglect these since they favour the contacts indispensable for re-election.  Additionally, absenteeism can be explained by the M.P.s' lack of interest for debates which they consider insignificant, either because these are too specialized, or because they concern matters largely aired by the media before being submitted to Parliament, or because they cover political choices already made.
Within the parliamentary institution there are means to reduce this absenteeism. It would be appropriate to reduce drastically the number of public sessions of the Assemblies and to multiply the written proceedings. It is important to make use of the existing procedures such as permanent sections, as these are better adapted than the large assemblies to the requirements of contemporary parliamentarism. Finally, it is necessary that group leaders and commission presidents should be more vigilant to absenteeism in the commissions, because it impedes correct and functional parliamentary work and can in no manner be justified.

How to Cite:

Drion, F., (1980) “L'absentéisme parlementaire : Diagnostic et remèdes”, Res Publica 22(1-2), p.79-100. doi:

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Published on
29 Jun 1980
Peer Reviewed