As newly elected President Moon Jae-in made clear his intention to drive forward with his plan to amend the constitution, it is likely that the discussion for constitutional amendment will accelerate. Even though both the ruling and opposition parties are willing, there are so many obstacles ahead to overcome in terms of procedures and details.
During his election campaign, President Moon promised to change the constitution so that the presidential term would be for four years renewable for one more term from the current five-year single term beginning in 2022. He said he would ask for the constitutional revision in the local elections scheduled in May next year.
In order for such a constitutional amendment proposal to pass the National Assembly, more than 200 lawmakers (more than two-thirds of the quorum) must cast yes votes. Given the number of lawmakers on both sides of the aisle who took part in the constitutional amendment study group is 193, the possibility for the proposal to pass is quite high.
The question is whether the parties can agree upon a single version of the amendment proposal. Parties like the Korea Liberty Party, the People's Party, and the Bareun Party came to an agreement that they would push for a four-year two-term proposal, with the government led by a prime minister. However, the People's Party preferred a semi-presidential system in which a president exists alongside a prime minister and a cabinet, with the latter two being responsible to the legislature of a state. Meanwhile, President Moon didn't mention how power would be shared between president and prime minister.