The French parliament isa bicameral legislature comprising a National Assembly (Assemblée Nationale) and a Senate. The National Assembly deputies represent local constituencies and are directly elected for 5-year terms. TheAssembly has the power to dismiss the cabinet, and thus the majority in the Assembly determines the choice of government. Senators are chosen by an electoral college for 6-year terms (originally9-year terms), and one half of the seats are submitted to election every 3 years starting in September 2008.
The Senate's legislative powers are limited; in the event of disagreement between the twochambers, the National Assembly has the final say, except for constitutional laws and lois organiques (laws that are directly provided for by the constitution) in some cases. The government has astrong influence in shaping the agenda of Parliament.
French politics are characterised by two politically opposed groupings: one left-wing, centred around the French Socialist Party, and the otherright-wing, centred previously around the Rassemblement pour la République (RPR) and now its successor the Union for a Popular Movement (UMP). The executive branch is currently composed mostly of the UMP.ENCONOMY
French euro coins feature three separate designs for the three series of coins. The minor series was designed by Fabienne Courtiade, the middle one by Laurent Jorio and the major two...