Friday, March 06, 2015

Part XXXII (32) Zhiwei Tong (童之伟) Series: "Fundamental Understanding must be Installed for Full and Effective Implementation of the Constitution"

(Zhiwei Tong, PIX (c) Larry Catá Backer)

For 2012, this site introduced the thought of Zhiwei Tong (童之伟), one of the most innovative scholars of constitutional law in China. Professor Tong has been developing his thought in part in a essay site that was started in 2010. See, Larry Catá Backer, Introducing a New Essay Site on Chinese Law by Zhiwei Tong, Law at the End of the Day, Oct. 16, 2010. Professor Tong is on the faculty of law at East China University of Political Science and Law. He is the Chairman of the Constitution Branch of the Shanghai Law Society and the Vice Chairman of the Constitution Branch of the China Law Society. The Series continues.

The Zhiwei Tong (童之伟) Series focuses on translating some of Professor Tong's work on issues of criminal law and justice in China, matters that touch on core constitutional issues. Each of the posting will include an English translation from the original Chinese, the Chinese original and a link to the original essay site. Many of the essays will include annotations that may also be of interest. I hope those of you who are interested in Chinese legal issues will find these materials, hard to get in English, of use. I am grateful to my research assistants, YiYang Cao, Bo Wang, and Zhichao Yi for their able work in translating these essays.

TABLE OF CONTENTS FOR THE SERIES AVAILABLE HERE. For this contribution to the Zhiwei Tong (童之伟) Series /(Part XXXI) we translate (via Shan Gao):

Fundamental Understanding must be Installed for Full and Effective Implementation of the Constitution   (March 4, 2015).


Fundamental Understanding must be Installed for Full and Effective Implementation of the Constitution[1]

童之伟 by Tong Zhiwei

When it comes to ‘rule the nation according to law’ and ‘build socialist rule of law state,’ the first priority is ‘rule the nation in accordance with the Constitution.’ If we don't implement it, constitution is nothing but a piece of paper, regardless how well it has been written. Constitution implementation is the centrality of the “Rule the state in accordance with law.” Currently, the central authority pointed out to “Comprehensively implement constitution,” which is a timely proposal that critically important and necessary to China. Constitution, as well as its implementation are real and specific, they are not abstract idea. The main focus of this article is about the implementation of Constitution. Key elements that shore up the characteristics of constitution framework, the constitutional rights protection mechanism and vertical and horizontal distribution of state sovereign rights are the principles such as, “socialist democracy”, “rule of law”, “respect and protect human rights”, “democratic centralism;” and normative infrastructures that represent these principles, such as People’s Congress and other constitutional supervision system. In order to fully and effectively implement constitution, one must have some fundamental understanding on the following matters:

I. The Essence of Constitution implementation

No constitution implementation without a constitution. It is a common view among scholars of different states that constitution is designated as a basic or fundamental law to restrain the public power for the protection of individual’s rights and freedom. Chinese leaders commonly consider constitution as the core charter for efficient governance. Each view is reasonable with its different focus. The former one is more academic and neutral while the later one reflects the view of leadership as it more concentrate on the angle of governance.

The implementation of constitution is the application of constitution and norms into the real life. Under current academic paradigm, the implementation of constitution could be theorized by ‘Three Section Theory’ or Two Section Theory’. Under Three Section Theory, constitution implementation means: Constitution Compliance, Constitution Enforcement and Constitution Application. The compliance could be further sub-categorized as individual compliance and public organization compliance. The constitution enforcement means organ of sovereign/ political power enforcement and organ of administrative power enforcement. The application of constitution means the court system application and prosecuting system application. Three section theory captures the idea but less concise as the following indicates.

The two section theory consider constitution implementation as constitution compliance and application. The compliance means individual and public organ compliance. The application means state sovereign/ political organ application, administrative organ application, court and prosecuting system application.

Constitution compliance is a passive duty that require all subjects of the constitution, regardless official or nonofficial, to comply with the norms and principle of the constitution. The preamble provided that: “The people of all nationalities, all State organs, the armed forces, all political parties and public organizations and all enterprises and institutions in the country must take the Constitution as the basic standard of conduct,” The article 5 provided that: “All State organs, the armed forces, all political parties and public organizations and all enterprises and institutions must abide by the Constitution and other laws. All acts in violation of the Constitution or other laws must be investigated.”

Constitution application means state and other organs exercise their prescribed power under the authorization of the constitution in accordance with the requirement of constitutional procedural. The distribution of such power depends on the constitution system, some have more and some have none. In China, first and foremost, constitution application is the responsibility of the state sovereign organ, which is National People’s Congress. It exercise legislative authority and decision making power on certain important issues. Second, constitution application refers to administrative application. For a concise and clear analysis, administrative application here is an overarching concept that includes not only the administrative authority of state council, but also the constitutional responsibility of the President and Chairman of Central Military Commission.

Although logical and theoretical speaking China shall have infrastructure for court and prosecuting application of the constitution, instead, the current constitution system had already established People’s Congress, which means no place for court and prosecuting application. Thus, the system of people’s congress under democratic centralism has fundamental differences in comparison with other nation’s constitutional system such as “separation of power, checks and balance.” In later discussion I will talk more on it.

The above discussion is direct application of the constitution and we shall not overlook the indirect application, which means implement constitution through the enforcement of other laws and rules. The commons and differences between direct and indirect application is a broad topic that I shall specially discuss in a different time.

II. Experience and Lessons of constitution application

There were quite some highlights during the short journey of constitution application for the past 60 years since the Oct 1949.

One of the main experience for China is to rely on People’s Congress system and use legislation to implement the constitution. Under common law system, the court, especially supreme court plays an equally important role as the legislature to implement constitution through the process of judicial review. One of the classic example is US. Under china’s constitutional system, People’s congress elect and supervise the judge while the judge is responsible to the people’s congress. Thus the court cannot directly apply constitution for judicial review. Furthermore, china is traditionally a civil law country that refuse the authority of case law since 1949. After 1982, three decades of legislation has displayed tremendous legislative achievements that build up the socialist legal system.

Some scholar proposed that political guidance is also part of Chinese constitution implementation. “The constitution implementation has following a dualism system of political implementation and legal implementation, and the political implementation is guiding normative legal implementation. The discussion of constitution implementation shall fully understand this feature. The key of exercising political norms is to establish a political review mechanism with Chinese characteristic, especially started from China’s political practice to establish an internal party political review system.[2]” There are some merits in such discussion.

On the other hands, we do have so many issues in our implementation for the past 60 years. Take the example of 1954 constitution: prior to the passage, Mao Zedong, Liu Shaoqi and other cadres had pointed out that Constitution must be implemented, and state organ staff shall be the model. Violation occurs when there is a lag in enforcement[3]. However, there were many serious violations disturb the normal functioning of the constitution in the following year since its passage.

Movement for the Suppression of Counter-revolutionaries' of 1955 or Hu Feng’s Counter Revolutionary Clique is a typical nationwide high profile constitution violation. Hu Feng submit Report on the practice and state of art and literature in recent years to central CPC, AKA “Three-hundred-thousand-word letter,” with his personal opinion on literature critics. Unfortunately his critics were considered as counter revolutionary, which subject himself into the imprisonment. He was arrested on May 16th of 1955, before the People’s Congress’s approval on May 18th. He stayed in the prison for 10 years before a court trail with 14 years sentence. The ‘evidence’ for conviction is private letters between Hu and his colleagues and friends. According to the Report on reviewing Hu Feng Counter-Revolutionary Case by Supreme Court and Supreme People's Procuratorate, 2100 people under investigation during 1955-1956. 92 was arrested, 62 was segregated, 73 had been suspended from their posts and 78 people been officially labeled as ‘Hu Feng Elements’.

Without doubts, the case of Hu Feng exposed large scale violations of article 86 and 90 of 1954 Constitution about constitutional rights of freedom of speech and privacy of correspondence of citizen, violation of article 37 that deputy to the National Congress may not be arrested placed on criminal trial without the consent of NPC or standing committee of NPC when NPC not in session, by the supreme leaders.

The second lesson is the expansion of 1956 ‘anti-right campaign,’ which greatly violated the basic constitutional rights of private citizens, mainly the freedom of speech and personal freedom. During the campaign, although denying socialism is minority[4], this cannot serve as the basis of depriving private citizen’s constitutional rights of freedom of speech and punishing them without the trail. The web encyclopedia, baidu baike, provided that: based on the repeatedly statistics, 552877 people had been ruled as right-wing. 97% of the ruling was wrong. This was a huge mistake on a unprecedented level.

The third lesson also the most serious one is the “culture revolution” and its negative outcomes. The Culture Revolution had entailed a dark time where private citizen’s constitutional rights been ruthless violated. The people’s congress system was almost paralyzed and the constitution has been de facto nullified. The article 2 of 1954 constitution provided that: “All power in the People’s Republic of China belongs to the people. The National People’s Congress and the local people’s congresses at various levels are the organs through which the people exercise state power.” Disregard the fact that the people’s congress system is China’s fundamental political system, Culture Revolution had paralyzed it for more than 8 years. The constitution has other provisions detailed the important rights of individual, while during the culture revolution even high level official from executive branch cannot protect themselves.

There are substantial improvement of these issues since Open Up, but that does not mean all difficulties ends.

III. Priority, Difficulties and specialty


Every constitutional state today placed great focus on the protection of individual’s basic rights with different variations. Normally after a country adopt the constitution, it would spend a great deal of time to explore a proper vertical and horizontal distribution of sovereign power and establish a system to address issues arise from the operation of such distribution. When a sounding system installed, the country would shift its focus on the protection of people’s basic rights. This is why most constitution text book would spend almost half of the chapters on the discussion of the protection.

There are different types of basic rights with different priority under the constitution. For the past 30 years, the main focus is people’s basic livelihood and economy rights. As the development of economy with more stability and prosperity, the strategy would shift to a more balanced protection in the future.


A simple way to put constitution implementation is: ask the official and masses to follow the written rules. This was easy to say especially in China where there is a lack of self-consciousness on rules.

The first difficulty is the compliance, precisely, let the officials and agents with powers to follow the rules. “To put rules in the cage” is to let these officials and agents follow the rules. Looking back to other countries’ experience, the common practice is to limit the power that state agents can exercise by given a specific list of limited authorization, no one and no agent is allowed to exercise power without constitutional authorization; power shall distribute among different agents to avoid over centralization and create certain level of counter balance so the limited power cannot penetrate constitutional order; further by creating people’s right protection mechanism to restrain and supervise the public power.

Second difficulty. This is the issue of the lag of legislation where proper enforceable secondary rules and laws has yet installed and thus make it is impossible to implement the constitutional rights. This issue is common among many countries in the history and termed as “legislature inaction.” In China, for example, freedom of assembly, of association, of procession and of demonstration has been written into the constitution albeit no laws specified the exercising of these rights until 1989. Also, the constitution provided freedom of speech, of the press, religious and privacy of correspondence, but yet laws and rules to specify on this area.

Third difficulty is about the application of laws and rules promulgated under the constitution. The implementation of constitution cannot achieve without the improvement of legal governance for the administrative agency, the independency of judicial system of court and prosecutor.


Like many other nations around the globe, Chines constitutionalism is one of the written constitution. The specialty emerged with our following comparison.

In comparison with presidential system; United States is the first nation in the history adopt a written constitution. Under common law tradition, the presidential system subject to the separation of power between legislature, administration and judicial, and the principle of checks and balance. The implementation of constitution is mainly rely on courts, then congress. The president has limited authority of exercising constitution and mainly exercise it through the signing of the law.

In comparison with parliamentary system under the principle of separation of power, and checks and balance; many countries like Germany, Italy distribute the authority of implementation between congresses, cabinet and constitutional court. British and Japanese parliamentary system are quite different because of British unwritten constitution tradition and American influence on Japan. Both UK and Japan let Supreme Court to take the responsibility of constitutional court.

In comparison with semi-presidential and parliamentary system under the separation of power and checks and balance principle; In countries like France and Russia, the president, parliamentary and constitutional court has separate authority on particular aspect of constitution implementation.

The implementation of constitution in China is quite different, which is results from the People’s Congress system under the principle of Democratic Centralism. Under People’s Congress system, people’s congress create and supervise state organs and state organs report duties to the congress. Although all state organs has equal duties for constitution compliance, people’s congress including its standing committee is the entity possess the decisive authority. Other organs, such as president, state council, and central military committee either has some limited direct authority or no authority at all, such as Supreme court and supreme people's procuratorate.

IV. supervision of the implementation

Many Chinese readers are quite familiar with the concept of ‘constitutional review’ or ‘review of constitutionality.’ The supervision of constitution implementation under PRC constitution context carries a similar idea. The supervision of constitution is interchangeable with these concepts. Under china’s constitution, supervision of constitution means, with the authorization of constitution, an entity review the constitutionality of the subject in accordance with constitution or laws and prosecute any violation.

It is worth to point out that including china in all the other sovereign state with constitutional system, violation of constitution mainly referring the conduct of the entity act on behalf of state power, not includes individual or private citizen’s conduct. This is because; first, constitutionality entails political consequences (such as resign, impeachment and nullification), which is different from civil, criminal or administrative liabilities that focus on individual person. Second, individual’s constitutional responsibility had already been reified by specific laws and rules, it is unnecessary to use constitution to prosecute individual.

The people’s congress system is fundamentally different from supervision system based on the principle of separation of power, and checks and balance. The US established common law court supervision system, which means the court exercise constitutional review, aka judicial review. Under US federal system, the constitutional review by federal courts set the precedent that could bind the behavior of all state organs under its jurisdiction. Such binding power is higher than the Congress. Nations influenced by US with president system all adopt the US constitutional review model. Under Constitutional Reform Act 2005 by British parliament, UK established the constitutional review system carried out by Supreme Court on Oct 1 of 2009.

Unlike US, many countries established a specialized entity to supervise the constitution implementation. There are two models: the German model with constitutional court and French model with constitutional committee. There is one common feature of these two models, the court or committee has the authority to decide the principle and make interpretation of the constitution in reviewing the case.

under article 62 and 67 of the constitution, NPC and its standing committee possess the power of supervising the constitution. For the past 30 years, there are quite some achievements by them but there are still a huge space for improvement. Hu jingtao’s conclusion on the 20th anniversary of the constitution implementation could be quite useful even today:

Due to the insufficiency of a developed legal system and the lack of professional law enforcement staff, there are many issues focused on the enforcement and implementation. Unconstitutional acts still persist. We need to speed up the study of the constitutional supervision system in order to improve it and establish it, so violations could be corrected promptly.[5]

I notice some scholars advocate courts and supreme court to take the responsibility of constitution review. This proposal shows goodwill but complete overlook the basic feature of Chinese constitutionalism that is a people’s congress system premised on democratic centralism. Under current system, there is no court has such authority that could make a court decision on the constitution to bind the authority of the NPC and its standing committee. It is the basic law of Chinese constitutionalism paradigm and constitution that without such binding power, the court cannot conduct constitutional review and interpretation.

For an effective supervision of the implementation of the constitution, we shall honestly and sincerely promote the constitutional responsibility of NPC and its standing committee. This is the way and the only way.

[1]本 文原载《人民法治》2015年2-3期,是 2014年国家社科重大项目“人民代表大会制度理论创新研究”(批准号14ZDA014)的阶段性成果。See VOL 2-3 Renmin Fazhi 2015, This paper is a working paper of 2014 state social science project “New Study on the Progress of People’s Congress System.”

[2] 殷啸虎:《中国宪法实施的政治路径经验》,见《法学》 2014 年11期。Yin Xiaohu, 2014, Political Path and Experience of the Implementation of Chinese Constitution, FA XUE Vol 11.

[3]原 全国人大法律委员会委员刘政先生曾撰文做过详细介绍。见刘政:《1954年宪法施行三年后为 什么被逐渐弃废》见《中国人大》2002年14期。Liu Zheng, why 1954 Constitution been abandoned after the first three year of implementation, Vol 14 ZHONG GUO RENDA, 2002.

[4] 《关于建国以来党的若干历史问题的决议》,1981年6月27日中国共产党第十一届中央委员会第六次全体会 议通过。Resolutions for Certain Historical Issues of the Party Since the Establishment of the P.R.C

[5]胡 锦涛:《在纪念宪法施行二十周年大会上的讲话》(2002年12月4 日),ttp:// /881379.html

Hu jingtao, 2002, Dec,4, Speech on the 20th Anniversary of Constitution Implementation

发表时间:2015-03-04 18:48 阅读次数: 437      所属分类:

依 法治国,建设社会主义法治国家,依宪治国是第一位的。宪法本身不过是印着一些文字的纸,它写得再好,如果不实施,并没有多少意义。依法治国的核心是实施宪 法。中央现在强调全面有效实施宪法,极为重要,非常必要和及时。宪法是具体的,宪法实施也是具体的,本文集中讲中国宪法的实施。中国的宪法架构、基本权利 保障方式和国家权力纵横向配置方式都有自身的特点,构成这些特点的关键要素,是宪法规定的社会主义民主、法治、尊重和保障人权,民主集中制等原则,和体现 这些原则的制度设施,其中主要是人民代表大会制度和和相应的宪法监督体制。要全面有效宪法实施,必须基于以上诸要素形成宪法实施的如下基本认知。
宪 法实施首先要有宪法。各国宪法学界最常见的看法,是把宪法视为通过限制公权力的方式来保障公民个人权利和自由的国家根本法或基本法,而我国领导人通常把宪 法看作治国安邦的总章程。上述两种说法各有侧重,都有道理,只是前者一种说法比较学理化,立场比较超然,后一种说法的言说主体是站在执政党与国家领导人的 高度,因为,普通公民毕竟谈不上治国安邦。
宪 法实施就是宪法文本或宪法的规定在现实生活中的落实。按我国的法学教学体系,宪法实施的内容在逻辑上可分为三大块,也可分为两大块。三分法是将宪法实施分 为宪法遵守、宪法执行和宪法适用,其中宪法遵守进一步分为个人遵守宪法和公权力组织遵守宪法,宪法执行进一步分为国家权力机关执行宪法和国家行政机关执行 宪法,而宪法适用也相应地区分为审判机关适用宪法和检察机关适用宪法。这样解说宪法实施是可以的,但显得比较复杂。所以,最好还是采用线索显得更为清晰的 两分法来解说宪法实施。
宪 法实施中的宪法适用,指国家机关等公权力组织按照宪法规定的权限和程序直接根据宪法的规定行使职权,其主体通常仅限于宪法授的国家机关或宪法认可的公共组 织。在不同的宪法体制下,或同一宪法体制的不同国家机关,其所担负的宪法适用权力,存在大小乃至有无之区分。在我国,宪法适用首先是国家权力机关的职权, 主要表现为全国人大及其常委会直接根据宪法行使国家立法权和决定重大问题等职权。其次,我国宪法适用还表现为行政性适用,这里的所谓行政性适用,是本文为 了避免分类太琐碎而概括出来的一个说法,它不仅仅指国务院直接根据宪法制定行政法规等行使职权的行为,还包括国家主席、中央军委主席直接根据宪法行使职权 的行为。
需 要说明,从理论上和逻辑上看,我国还应该有宪法的审判机关适用和检察机关适用,但从宪法上看,在我国人民大表大会制度下不可能有审判机关适用和检察机关适 用,实际上也没有这种性质的宪法适用。也在这个问题上,按民主集中制原则组织和活动的人民代表大会制度与按三权分立、制约平衡原则组织和活动的所有其它国 家的政权组织形式,确实有根本的区别。关于这一点,我后面还会谈到。
适 应人民代表大会制度的架构和顺应制定法制度的传统,我国六十多年来特别重视通过制定法律的路径实施宪法而且成效显著,这应该算是我国宪法实施的首要经验。 在三权分立制约平衡体制和判例法传统下,海洋法系中实行成文宪法的国家实施宪法,虽然也重视制定法律的路径,但他们更重要的路径是通过法院、尤其是最高法 院进行宪法性裁判或做违宪审查来实施宪法,这方最典型的是美国。在我国宪法架构下,法院由人民代表大会产生、对其负责、受其监督,故法院地位不足以做宪法 性裁判,不可能直接适用宪法。另外,我国也缺乏判例法传统。所以,1949年以来,尤其是自1982年以来,我国一直重视通过立法实施宪法,不承认有判例 法。在制定法律实施宪法方面,我国30多年来成就巨大,其基本标志,是社会主义法律体系已基本建成。
1955年的所谓胡风反革命集团案就是一次具有全国性重大影响的违宪事件。时任中国文联委员和全国人大代 表的作家胡风,此前向中共中央呈送了一个《关于解放以来的文艺实践情况的报告》,这个后来被称为“30万言书”的上书,不过是作者谈自己对文艺问题的一些 不同意见,但却不幸被错误地被办成了“反革命集团案件”。胡风1955年5月16日被捕,但5月18日全国人大才作出逮捕决定,被关押10年多之后,到 1965年底法院才对胡风做 出有期徒刑14年的判决,其定罪的重要证据之一,是胡风和同事、朋友的私人通信。1980年7月21日公安部、最高人民法院、最高人民检察院《关于“胡风 反革命集团”案件的复查报告》披露,1955-1956年此案全国共清查了2100多人,逮捕92人,隔离62人,停职反省73人,正式定为“胡风分 子”78人。
在 当今世界,各立宪国家宪法实施的重点基本上都放在公民基本权利或基本人权保障上,但不同国家不同时代还是有不少差异。一般来说,一个国家制宪后,往往会花 一段时间重点落实宪法关于国家权力纵向和横向划分的规定,解决由此产生的纠纷,然后宪法实施的重点,会比较稳定地转向公民基本权利保障条款的落实。现代法 治国家,宪法实施的重点基本上都锁定在基本权利保障条款的落实上。这种情况在学理上的表现,就是这些国家宪法学教材的半数左右或半数以上篇幅,都用在论说 基本权利保障及讨论相关典型案件的处理方式方面。
宪 法实施难,首先表现为遵守宪法难。遵守宪法难,主要在于让手握党政大权的机构和官员遵守宪法难。我国领导人说要把权力关进笼子,实际上这就是让掌握公权力 的机构和官员遵守宪法。如何做到这一点呢?各国通常的答案,主要不外乎这样一些:限制公权力的总量,公权力的范围以宪法列举的为限,不允许任何组织和个人 未获宪法授权或超越宪法授权范围行使公权力;把公权力分别授予不同的国家机关,防止其过于集中,或进而促成其相互之间形成不同程度的制约,以降低公权力强 度、防止其破坏既定的宪法秩序;用落实公民权利和自由之保障的方式监督或制约公权力。
其 次,宪法实施难,还表现为难以按照宪法的公民基本权利保障条款制定必要而适当的法律。把保障公民权利和自由的条款写进了宪法,但因这样或那样的原因没有制 定必要而适当的法律实施这些宪法条款的情况,在许多法治国家的历史上都曾经有过。这种情况在宪法学上被称为立法不作为。类似情况我国也是存在的。例 如,1949年10月之后我国历来的宪法,不论是临时宪法还是正式宪法,都规定公民有集会游行示威的自由,但我国直到1989年才制定集会游行示威法。又 如,我国现行宪法规定公民有言论出版自由,结社自由,宗教信仰自由,还规定公民通信自由和通信秘密受法律的保护,但我国这些方面的法律迄今还没有来得及制定。
再 次,宪法实施难,也表现为根据宪法制定的法律难以得到准确有效和公正的适用。我们现在强调依法行政,实行司法审查,要通过司法改革确保法院独立行使审判权 和确保检察院独立行使检察权,无不是为了保证根据宪法制定的法律能得到准确有效和公正的适用,归根结底是要实施好宪法。
与 中国可比性的第一类国家是总统制国家。美国是历史上第一个实行成文宪法制度国家,在判例法传统下实行按立法、行政和司法三权分立、制约平衡原则组织起来的 总统制。美国宪法的实施首先靠法院,其次才是国会,总统直接实施宪法的职权不多,主要通过实施法律来间接参与实施宪法。
第 二类与中国有可比性的国家是在成文宪法下按三权分立、制约平衡原则组成的议会制国家,如议会制的德国、意大利,这些国家议会、内阁和宪法法院均参与实施宪 法,实际作为难分仲伯。英国、日本也是议会制国家,但英国实行不成文宪法制度,日本议会制受美国总统制影响,两国现在都由最高法院兼理宪法法院职能,这点 决定了英、日的宪法实施方式与德、意小有差异。
中 国虽然也实行成文宪法制度,但中国实施宪法实施具有完全不同于上述三类国家的特点。中国的这个特点,是由其实行按民主集中制原则组织起来的人民代表大会制 度决定的。在人大制度下,由于其它国家机关都由人大产生,受其监督,对其负责,所以,虽然所有国家机关在遵守宪法方面都有同样的义务,但适用宪法的决定性 权力,却掌握在全国人大(包括其常委会)手中,其它最高国家机关,要么直接适用宪法的职权较少(如国家主席、国务院、中央军委),要么根本没有(如最高人 民法院和最高人民检察院)。我国最高人民法院和最高人民检察院只能通过适用法律的路径间接参与宪法适用。
相 信读者经常看到“违宪审查”、“合宪性审查”等概念,其实,我国宪法文本中的“监督宪法实施”一词(简称宪法监督),其核心内容与它们实际上差不多。宪法 监督基本上可以视为“违宪审查”、“合宪性审查”的同义词。可以这样说,我国的“宪法监督”,是由宪法授权的主体,按宪法本身或法律的规定进行合宪性审 查,取缔违宪行为,追究违宪责任,保证宪法实施的制度。
我国作为人民代表大会制度一部分的宪法监督制度,与按三权分立、制约平衡原则组织起来的宪法监督体制有根本区别。比照我国宪法规定的宪 法监督体制和内容,可以说美国实行的是普通法院宪法监督制,即由普通法院行使违宪审查权(美国人自己称为司法审查)。以美国联邦系统为例,美国联邦三级法 院的宪法性判例(或违宪审查例)确立的规则或对宪法的解释,能够约束辖区内的一切国家机关,具有高于国会立法的法律效力。不少受美国影响实行总统制的国家 采用这个制度。甚至英国国会制定2005年宪制改革法案》、设立最高法院并于2009101日起开始运作后,也形成了类似于美国的普通法院违宪审查制度。
与 美国不同,更多的立宪国家现在采用的是专门机关宪法监督制或合宪性审查制。这类体制可进一步分为两种,即德国的宪法法院审查制和法国的宪法委员会审查制。 这两种体制有种种不同,但有一点是相同的,那就是,宪法法院和宪法委员会裁决确立的原则或对宪法的解释,具有约束其它所有国家机关的法律效力。
在 我国,按现行宪法第62条和67条规定,全国人民代表大会和全国人大常委会监督宪法的实施。30多年来,全国人大及其常委会在监督宪法实施方面做出了自己 的努力,取得了一定成效,但效果还不理想。时任国家主席胡锦涛在纪念宪法施行20周年说的下列解说和评估,应该说对于中国今天来说仍然适用:“由于法律和 体制不健全以及执法人员自身素质不完全适应等问题,有法不依、执法不严、违法不究的问题还不少,一些不同程度的违宪现象仍然存在。”在承认存在违宪情况 后,他提出,“要抓紧研究和健全宪法监督机制,进一步明确宪法监督程序,使一切违反宪法的行为都能及时得到纠正。”[5]
我 注意到,有些学者主张我国法院特别是最高人民法院行使宪法监督职权,进行违宪审查。提这种想法动机是很好的,但完全忽视了按民主集中制原则组织和活动的人 民代表大会制度的根本特点。在人民代表大会制度下,按宪法规定的民主集中制原则,任何法院都绝对无权也不可能做出约束全国人大及其常委会的宪法裁判和宪法 解释。而没有这种约束力的所谓宪法裁判和宪法解释,就根本不成其为宪法裁判和宪法解释。这是宪法学和中国宪法的常识。

[2]殷啸虎:《中国宪法实施的政治路径经验》,见《法学》 2014年11期。
[4] 《关于建国以来党的若干历史问题的决议》,1981年6月27日中国共产党第十一届中央委员会第六次全体会议通过。

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