The State and Political Parties in Colombia
Between 1990 and 1995, Colombia experienced an unprecedented period of intensive political change, as reflected in the conduct of seven national elections and the drafting of a new constitution. This outpouring of democratic activity represented an effort to move from a limited, elitist democratic regime to one based upon more extensive popular participation and a more equitable distribution of societal resources. Quite obviously, Colombian elites, following a highly institutionalised pattern with respect to efforts to restructure power relationships, opted for political reform as a means of enhancing the diminishing legitimacy of the political system. This reform effort, which gathered momentum during the Betancur administration and continued through the Barco and Gaviria governments, generated formidable opposition from traditional politicians and other elite groups, but finally emerged triumphant with the convoking of the Constituent Assembly and the promulgation of a new constitution on 4 July 1991.
KeywordsCivil Society Party System Party Leader Political Reform Liberal Party
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