The Federal Assembly is the Parliament of the Russian Federation. It is a representative and legislature body of the Russian Federation. The Federal Assembly consists of two chambers - the Federation Council and the State Duma.
The constitution of the Russian Federation establishes the Federal Assembly
(the Federation Council and the State Duma) as one of the bodies constituting the government of the Russian Federation (chapter 1, article 11). To change the status of the Federal Assembly in the system of the state bodies is possible only through the change of the Constitution of the Russian Federation. High status of the Federal Assembly, thus, is provided with the utmost constitutional and legal guarantee - so strong, that even the Federal Assembly itself has no right to reconsider the status. (chapter 1, article 135 of the Constitution of the Russian Federation).
Another important guarantee represents the fact that the body of legislature as a part of the system of separation of powers is independent from the other powers.
is the major condition for successful functioning of the Parliament. The Constitution of the Russian Federation does not define exact limits of the sphere of the legislation, which may be accepted by the Federal Assembly, owing to that, the Parliament has a right to accept (or to not accept) any laws without being commanded. The Federal Assembly does not submit to any control from the executive power. It defines its needs independently and fix them in the state budget, thus providing own financial independence.
Both chambers of the Federal Assembly form auxiliary machineries that are subject to no supervision by the executive power. The Parliament defines its internal organization and procedure itself, being guided only by requirements of the Constitution of the Russian Federation. And the most important fact is that nobody may interfere in the prerogative of the Federal Assembly to accept legislation, what provides true omnipotence of the Parliament and its independence in realization of its main function.
At the same time the parliamentary independence is not absolute. It is limited
through such institutes of constitutional law, as:
- Referendum, since through referendum some laws may be directly approved, without intermediary of the Parliament;
- The state of emergency and martial law suspend legislation;
- The power of the Constitutional Court of the Russian Federation to declare laws unconstitutional;
- The power of the President of the Russian Federation to dismiss the State Duma under the certain circumstances;
- Ratified international agreements that are higher than legislation in respect of legal effect;
- The demand of the Constitution of the Russian Federation to accept financial legislation by the State Duma only on condition that the government of Russia gave its conclusion.
These restrictions follow from the principle of separation of powers. They, however, do not belittle independent status of the Federal Assembly in the system of the bodies of the Russian state.