Parliament committee rejects opposition proposal to change election law
Parliament’s judicial committee on Monday refused to put on the national assembly’s agenda a proposal which the proponent opposition parties said would make Hungary’s electoral system “fair, transparent and proportionate”.
Socialist group leader Bertalan Tóth said that the proposal, backed also by LMP, the Liberals, the Dialogue and Együtt parties, would have lowered the parliamentary threshold for political parties from 5 percent to “better reflect the will of voters” and would also have facilitated removing “fake parties” — organisations entering the race with the sole purpose of getting the state subsidy for political parties running in the election.
The proposed system would eliminate the “discriminatory” practice of making it technically easier for ethnic Hungarians to cast their ballot than for non-ethnic Hungarians living in other countries,
Tóth said, adding, however, that the proposal did not seek to strip people with dual citizenship of their Hungarian nationality.
Tóth voiced criticism of the current electoral system, saying it had helped ruling Fidesz to win an almost two-thirds majority with as little as 40 percent of the votes in the last election.
He said it was “appalling” that deputies of Fidesz had referred to that system as “appropriate, proportionate, and democratic” in the committee debate. He also said the committee’s rejection of the proposal indicated Fidesz’s “lack of courage” to compete in a fairer electoral regime.