Liechtenstein's Parliament is known as the Landtag. 25 members of parliament form the Legislative together with the Prince. The Parliament as the representative of the people, and the Princely House, represented by the Prince, exercise legislative power in Liechtenstein. Any differences of opinion between these are decided by referendum.
The Parliament (the Landtag) is elected by voters every four years. The population is represented by 25 parliamentarians the members of parliament. In political terms, Liechtenstein comprises the two constituencies Oberland and Unterland.
Laws passed by Parliament require the assent of the Prince, the signature of the Prime Minister and publication in an official law gazette. If laws do not receive Princely assent within six months, the law does not come into force and is deemed to have been rejected by him.
Two established political parties the Fortschrittliche Bürgerpartei (FBP) and the Vaterländische Union (VU) as well as the two opposition parties Freie Liste (FL) and Die Unabhängigen (DU) compete for the 25 seats in Parliament. The Freie Liste was founded in 1985 and has become part of the political landscape; it first entered Parliament in 1993. DU was launched in 2013 as a "splitter party", and won four seats at its first general election.
As recently as 20 years ago, party political allegiances tended to be "bequeathed" a family was red (VU) or black (FBP). This meant a large family had a corresponding party political weight at the time. Depending upon the political climate, experienced party strategists were able to predict the outcome of elections almost to the last vote. In the interim, this has changed. Now issues are decided less by party allegiance, and more on the merits of the particular matter.