What is Rule of Law Limit of power of rulers and principle of legality

Rule of Law

The concept of rule of law is related to state power. It is when that power, in relation to the decisions that can be taken by the rulers, is limited by the set of laws , by law.

All fundamental human rights must be protected by the State: political, social and economic rights.

Law, through legislation, will define what can or cannot be done, both in relation to rulers and in relation to citizens. In the rule of law, a decision cannot be contrary to the law, that is, the law cannot be violated.

The concept supports the idea that every society must establish some type of legal order in order to limit the exercise of political power.

Thus, it is opposed to a society that has a complete legal system, which does not impose limits on its main political agents and who act outside the law.

The main objective of the Rule of Law is, therefore, to establish a series of legal norms that must be complied with by all citizens, so that everyone can receive exactly the same treatment under the Law.


It is not a simple organizing principle, as it has a strong ethical charge. The four pillars that support it are the faithful reflection of this idea.

The first of these four pillars is contained in the supremacy of the Law as a reflection of the popular will. Then, we can mention the legal guarantee of freedom and rights for all citizens. The third pillar consists of the division of powers, with special relevance to the independence of the Judiciary. And finally, we are faced with the total submission of the Executive to the Law, better known as the rise of the principle of legality that allows the control of the executive and judicial powers to the administration in question.

Limit of power of rulers

The concept refers to the decision-making power of the rulers, that is, in the rule of law, no action or decision should go against the laws that exist in a territory.

In the same way citizens must submit to the laws as a way of living in an organized society, the power of the State is also submitted to the law.

The limit of power exists to guarantee that the most important thing in a State is the will and the guarantee of the citizens’ rights. It is for this reason that the law does not allow rulers to have absolute freedom in their decisions.

The rule of law and the principle of legality

The concept of rule of law is related to one of the basic principles of law: the Principle of Legality.

According to this principle, no one can be compelled to do something or not to do something, unless there is a provision in the law on the matter.

Difference between rule of law and democratic rule of law

The difference between the rule of law and the democratic rule of law is linked to the protection of values ​​and principles that are guaranteed to citizens by the Federal Constitution and other laws.

In the democratic rule of law, as in the rule of law, the decisions of the rulers must be taken based on the law and within the limits that are established by the legislation of the country.

The difference between them is that in the democratic State of law, the fundamental rights protected by the Constitution must be taken into account in decisions with the aim of protecting the rights of citizens.

Rule of Law and French Revolution

If there is a key date to understand the birth of the rule of law, it is undoubtedly the year 1789 with the beginning of the French Revolution. From there comes the idea that all citizens are equal.

The National Assembly , formed by representatives of all social classes, considered that the neglect of fundamental human rights was part of government corruption and other popular calamities, so that to contain this type of problem, a declaration of principles was proposed to consider the sacred rights of any human being, so that it would serve as a basis for the whole society of what were the real rights and obligations to be fulfilled by the executive and juridical powers. These basic and indisputable principles would be the pillar of the Constitution of 1798 whose objective was to guarantee the fulfillment of the rule of law.

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