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Argentine Chamber of Deputies: Map

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Floor of the Chamber of Deputies
The Chamber of Deputies is the lower house of the National Congressmarker, Argentinamarker's parliament. This Chamber holds exclusive rights to create taxes, to draft troops, and to accuse the President, the ministers and the members of the Supreme Court before the Senate.

Composition

It has 256 seats and one-half of the members are elected every two years to serve four-year terms by the people of each district (23 provinces and the Federal Capitalmarker) using proportional representation, D'Hondt formula with a 3% of the district registered voters threshold, and the following distribution:



History

The Chamber of Deputies was provided for in the Constitution of Argentina, ratified on May 1, 1853. Eligibility requisites are that members be at least twenty-five years old, and have been a resident of the province they represent for at least four years; as congressional seats are elected at-large, members nominally represent their province, rather than a district.

Otherwise patterned after Article One of the United States Constitution, per legal scholar Juan Bautista Alberdi's treatise, Bases de la Constitución Argentina, the chamber was originally apportioned in one seat per 33,000 inhabitants. The constitution made no provision for a national census, however, because the Argentine population doubled every twenty years from 1870 to 1930 as a result of immigration, and because this disproportionately benefited Buenos Airesmarker and the Pampasmarker-area provinces, censuses were conducted generationally, rather than every decade, until 1947.

Apportionment controversy

The distribution of the Chamber of Deputies is regulated since 1983 by Law 22.847, also called Ley Bignone, enacted by the last Argentine dictator, General Reynaldo Bignone, ahead of the 1983 general elections. This law establishes that, initially, each province shall have one deputy per 161,000 inhabitants, with standard rounding. After this is calculated, each province is granted three more deputies. If a province has fewer than five deputies, the number of deputies for that province is increased to reach that minimum.

The controversy today is that apportionment has not been changed since 1983, when this was based on the 1980 population census; there have been two other censuses since then (1991 and 2001, the next being in 2010). The minimum of five seats per province allotted the smaller ones a disproportionately large representation, as well. Accordingly, this distribution does not reflect Argentina's current population balance.

The President of the Chamber is elected by the majority caucus. Since 1983, the officeholders in this post have been:



Leading deputies

Leadership positions include:



2009 election

See List of current Argentine Deputies and Argentine legislative election, 2009

2007 election

See Argentine general election, 2007

2005 election

External links

  1. Honorable Senado de la Nación: Constitución Nacional
  2. Indec: Historia de los censos



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