Maria Betlem Castellà I Pujols | Parliaments, Estates and Representation
Where do the decisions taken by parliamentary and representative institutions that affect very large numbers of citizens derive from? Where do the laws or norms promulgated by these institutions, more or less effectively enacted and applied, come from? Where and how were the decisions and the legislation that have marked our history more or less drastically, more or less wisely, conceived?1 If we are to analyze by whom, where and how decisions are made or legislation is drawn up, both today and in the past, we must of necessity consider the role that the parliamentary commissions of representative institutions played – and still play – in the decision-making process and in the drafting of legislation. This will be so regardless of whether these commissions, standing committees, ad hoc committees (specific and provisional), general committees (involving the chamber as a whole), novenes (ninths) dotzenes (twelfths) divuitenes (eighteenths) vint-i-quatrenes (twenty-fourths) or trenta-sisenes (thirty-sixths) are linked to the legislative or to the executive power, to the parliament or to the senate, to local or central power; whether they are technical or legislative, or are composed of deputies or members of the same institution that set them up; and whether they have a mixed composition (with members from different institutions, such as, for example, commissions with members of the chambers of the commons and the lords, with members of parliament and the senate, or with representatives of the monarch and of the estates called to the Cortes) or an external composition (in that none of the members belongs to the institution that established it).