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PSD submits draft to amend the electoral law, wants new rules for the presidential elections

The Social Democrat Party (PSD) plans to amend the electoral law. Senator Serban Nicolae has initiated a draft law to amend the rules to elect Romania’s President.

There are also controversies among the proposals, such as the article referring to the institutions where electoral campaign activities are allowed.

According to the current law, besides consular offices and penitentiaries, schools are also on the list of the institutions where citizens can cast their vote to elect the President. Now, the PSD has cut schools from this list.

Another provision that might stir dissensions is related to the special ballot box. Under the current provisions, the ballot box can be requested one day before the elections at the latest. Social Democrats want now that the box could be required right on the elections’ day.

As for the ballot papers, they are now preserved three months after elections, but the ruling power wants to extend the period by another three months.

The draft has been tabled in the Senate, the Romanian Parliament’s upper chamber.

The amendments also include the possibility that an elector can endorse more candidates during the campaign and that only two election posters of the same candidate can be placed on a billboard at the most.

Another provision says that counting the votes can be possible in maximum 48 hours since the voting procedure is ending.

JusMin: There is intention to draft a new electoral code by 2019

Justice Minister Tudorel Toader went further on and said that the electoral laws have a lot of vulnerabilities and that’s why there is the intention of drafting a new electoral code to harmonize the legislation on elections.

He argued on Saturday that in order for the citizens to exert their right to vote a clear, coherent and predictable legislation is needed.

The minister pleaded for a joint collaboration among the institutions that are involved in the voting process (such as the Permanent Electoral Authority, the Interior Ministry, the National Institute of Statistics, the Authority for the Citizenship), ‘in order to establish exactly how many citizens who have the right to vote are.’

Toader argued that the main vulnerability of the electoral laws is that “there is a law for each electoral process”.

“All electoral laws must be brought under the same electoral code so that all law overlaps should be removed. For instance, there is the crime of stealing the ballot box. Why should you repeat the crime five times in every law, when it is enough to mention it only once,” Toader said.

As for the intention to amend the law on electing the President, the Justice minister has been quite elusive, saying this law is something else.

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