New regulations for the elections abroad

new regulations for the elections abroad Amended election legislation aimed at hopefully eliminating the issues that hindered the election process in the Diaspora, got passed by the Senate

The Romanian Senate has convened in an extraordinary session to pass amendments to the Election Code, unanimously considered an emergency issue following the row caused by the huge queues at polling stations abroad, where many Romanians had to wait for hours to be able to cast their ballot in the latest European Parliament elections.

In fact, the elections in May this year were considered a reiteration of the organizational fiasco of the 2014 presidential voting abroad, when a significant number of Romanians from the Diaspora, was even unable to vote, a situation, which sparked off protests in front of the polling stations.

The Social Democrats (PSD), number one in the coalition government, have attracted a lot of criticism for their failure to stage civilized elections. Under the pressure exerted by the public opinion, the presidency and the opposition, a draft on amending the election code, designed to eliminate dysfunctions that might appear during the election process, has been debated upon and approved by the Senate.

Amendments include an extended election period for the Romanians abroad as well as the introduction of postal voting at the presidential elections in autumn. Senator Calin Popescu Tariceanu, leader of ALDE, the second political force in the government coalition, has shared with us the main amendments regulating the election process abroad.

Calin Popescu Tariceanu: "We are going to have a prolonged early voting session on three days: Friday, Saturday and Sunday. Polling stations are going to remain open on Sunday until 24 hours and we are also going to have the postal voting, which wasn't available in the presidential election, but only in the Parliament elections."

According to opposition Liberal senator Laura Scantei, the aforementioned amendments are going to prevent dysfunctions in the future elections involving the Romanians abroad.

Laura Scantei: "This draft on amending several election laws is focusing on concrete measures, aimed not only at ensuring people's fundamental right to vote, but also at preventing administrative hindrances to exercising this right. It is very important that all Romanian citizens in the Diaspora have been given voting alternatives, starting with the three-days early voting and the postal voting."

On the other hand, the Liberals have called on the executive to mount an information campaign for the Romanians abroad, briefing them on the latest amendments to the Election Code. The Democratic Union of Ethnic Hungarians in Romania (UDMR) refused to endorse the amendments as they consider unfair for the voting to continue after 21 hours on Sunday as the Romanians abroad have been given three days to vote. The legislative amendments endorsed by the Senate have been submitted to the decision-making Chamber of Deputies for the final decision.

(translated by bill)
Publicat: 2019-07-02 13:35:00
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