Overview and context
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The Kingdom of Sweden is a constitutional monarchy with the Monarch serving as the head of State. In practice, however, it is a parliamentary democracy in which the government is constitutionally formed and led by the Prime Minister.
The Prime Minister is appointed by the 349-member Parliament, which is, in turn, elected by popular vote. All members of the Parliament are elected to serve four-year terms and the most recent election was in September 2014. Sweden has had a unicameral parliament since 1971.
Both the Government and private members of the Parliament have the authority to introduce legislation, which is first tabled by the Speaker of the Parliament and assigned to one of 15 Parliamentary Committees for consideration. The specific committee then studies and reports back to the Parliament regarding the legislation in question via a committee report. Following the committee report, the legislation may be subject to a plenary meeting, which involves member debate or debate is forgone in the event of unanimous approval. In order to be approved, legislation must be assented to by a majority of the members of the Parliament. Once approved, legislation is sent to the Government for implementation. Governmental ministries not only implement policies, but also serve as expert bodies throughout the legislative process.