Park Geun Hye Vetoes Parliamentary Law Revision
kpride, June 25, 2015, 9:36 a.m.
President Park Geun-hye on Thursday vetoed a parliamentary bill designed to empower the National Assembly to challenge government enactment, denouncing it as the assembly's encroachment on administrative rights.
"The parliamentary revision bill is something that aims to infringe upon judicial power and meddle in every administrative affairs of the government," Park said as she rejected signing the bill into law in a Cabinet meeting. "It is a matter the past governments did not accept."
The revision bill, passed through the assembly in late May, had been a major irritation to Park, who has been seeking to contain the spread of Middle East Respiratory Syndrome, as well as the economic fallout from its outbreak.
The bill, intended to allow more power to lawmakers to review and change government-enacted rules, had been brought up for Park's approval earlier this month in spite of her pledge to veto it."The exercise of veto power was inevitable because (the bill) is something that paralyzes the administrative service and risks national crisis," she noted.
She also reasserted the unconstitutionality of the bill, saying it encroaches on the government's legislative power and the judiciary rights, as well as the constitutionally assured separation of legal, administrative and judicial powers.
It's Park's first use of veto power since she took office in 2013, although there have been 72 presidential vetoes since the launch of the Rhee Syng-man administration in 1948. The government is set to send a request for reconsideration of the bill to the National Assembly.
In anger, the main opposition New Politics Alliance for Democracy threatened to boycott parliamentary sessions. "One of the three pillars in the separation of three powers has just crumbled down," NPAD floor leader Lee Jong-kul said. "The parliamentary speaker should table the reconsideration bill to begin with. Before the process, all the negotiations with the ruling party are suspended."