Constituent Assembly of Georgia and Formation of Party System

Thumbnail Image
Journal Title
Journal ISSN
Volume Title
Ivane Javakhishvili Tbilisi state university, Faculty of social and political sciences
By the time of the declaration of independence (May 26, 1918), different political parties and groups, formed in the Russian Empire functioned in Georgia. After the formation of an independent state, locally based parties were supposed to form the basis for the party system in the country, while others were forced to disappear from the political arena. The real influence of the parties should have been proved through elections of the Constituent Assembly. Those elections were held on February 14-16, 1919. 15 political units participated in the elections. They can be divided into four groups: • Political parties and their breakaway parts – 7 units; • Political groups created by the Georgian intelligentsia – 3 units; • Political associations of ethnic minorities – 3 (4) units; • Foreign political parties – 2 units. Political parties, which were created by intelligentsia hurriedly, on the eve of elections (Union of non-party members, Shota Rustaveli Party, Aesthetic League of Patriots) did not win the support of the electorate and no single deputy of the Constituent Assembly was elected from these parties. Representatives of the political units of national minorities (National Council of the Muslims of Georgia, Union of Muslims of Borchalo district, Democratic Group of Georgian Greeks, National Party of Abkhazians) ended the elections with the same result. From the foreign parties, Revolutionary Federation “Dashnaktsjutjun” won three seats in 1 The paper was prepared in the framework of the Shota Rustaveli National Science Foundation project “Constituent Assemble of Georgia: Experience of the Georgian parliamentarism”, Code: FR – 18 – 20157. the Assembly; Social-Democratic Party of Russia did not collect enough votes. As for the first group of parties in our classification, initially 4 out of the 7 units won the elections, later on, 6 units were represented in the Assembly. The composition of parties in the Constituent Assembly looked as follows: Political parties Main elections - February1919 1st additional elections – August 1919 2nd additional elections – May 1920 Social-Democratic Party of Georgia 109 105 102 National-Democratic Party of Georgia 8 7 8 Socialist-Revolutionary Party of Georgia 5 5 6 Socialist-Federalist Party of Georgia 8 9 9 “Dashnaktsjutjun” - 3 3 National Party of Georgia - 1 2 The elections of the Constituent Assembly and two years of its activities revealed some trends in the development of the Georgian political spectrum, in particular, a domination of the leftist political parties (they had 122 and, later on, 120 seats out of 130 in the Assembly), a weakening of the Social-Democratic Party (the number of deputies decreased from 109 to 92), a formation of the radical leftist wing (“Akhali skhivi” group) by 1921, and a unification of the Right political forces (formation of the “Democratic Party”). The party composition of the Constituent Assembly by February 11, 1921, looked as follows: Party Seats in the Constituent Assembly Social-Democratic Labor Party of Georgia 92 Independent Social-Democratic faction “Skhivi” 10 Democratic fiction (union of non-socialist parties) 10 Socialist-Federalists 9 Socialist-Revolutinaries 6 “Dashnaktsjutjun” 3 In the Autumn of 1921 elections of the Parliament of Georgia should have been held on the basis of the Constitution of 1921, however, the Soviet occupation led to dramatic changes in the development of the country.
The founding Council of Georgia, Party System, Elections, Electoral Subjects, Party Spectre, საქართველოს დამფუძნებელი კრება, პარტიული სისტემა, არჩევნები, საარჩევნო სუბიექტები, პარტიული სპექტრი