Gov’t un­veils its plan for changes to elec­toral law

Kathimerini English - - Front Page -

The In­te­rior Min­istry yes­ter­day pub­li­cized the gov­ern­ment’s fi­nal pro­posal to re­form the coun­try’s elec­toral law, stick­ing to a pledge to push for the re­place­ment of the ex­ist­ing sys­tem of en­hanced pro­por­tional rep­re­sen­ta­tion with a sim­ple pro­por­tional one that scraps the 50 par­lia­men­tary seat bonus for the win­ning party.

The pro­posal also in­cludes low­er­ing the vot­ing age to 17 and main­tain­ing the 3 per­cent thresh­old to en­ter Par­lia­ment.

The gov­ern­ment needs 200 votes to pass the re­form into law, but that ap­pears un­likely as things stand now, as most par­ties of the op­po­si­tion have said they will not back it.

Con­ser­va­tives say the SYRIZA-led gov­ern­ment is push­ing for the scrap­ping of the elec­toral law be­cause it is lag­ging be­hind New Democ­racy in the polls and hopes, in this way, to stop it from form­ing an in­de­pen­dent gov­ern­ment after the coun­try’s next elec­tion – without the need to form a coali­tion.

Par­ties like cen­trist To Po­tami have said the new law would ren­der the coun­try “un­govern­able” and has called for other par­ties not to back the “coun­try’s ruin.”

The In­te­rior Min­istry said the sim­ple pro­por­tional sys­tem and the abo­li­tion of the bonus will en­sure that “Par­lia­ment be­comes truly rep­re­sen­ta­tive of Greek so­ci­ety” and al­low the ex­pres­sion within it of all views.

Ac­cord­ing to sources, the pro­posal will be de­bated un­til Mon­day evening and then tabled in Par­lia­ment Wed­nes­day, with the aim of pass­ing it into law by July 10.

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