The third political reform debate presentation presented in the House of Representatives this ThursdayIt brings up a controversial article.
The proposal presented by Heráclito Landínez, the representative of the Historical Pact, who is the spokesperson for the initiative in the Assembly, basically states: That the Attorney General cannot sanction popularly elected officials, and that any process that determines the fraudulent political rights must be approved by a judge.
(Also: Political reform in decisive weeks: will the presidential mandate be extended?)
The first article of the project, which will be discussed next week, proposes to amend article 40 of the Political Constitution as follows: “Except for the loss of investment right sanction, the restriction of political rights of individuals can only be made by a competent judicial authority in criminal proceedings.”
According to the description of the amendment, this article was added to “harmonize the Political Constitution with the international order on Human Rights and comply with the decisions of the International Court on political rights”.
Again, This article is not new and it was already in its original article, it’s just that the Senate screwed it up.
Among the innovations in the new document, different from those adopted in the first two debates in the Senate, are: They will try to reinvigorate mandatory voting, and campaigns will be 100 percent state-funded.
Regarding compulsory voting, the text states that it was reintroduced into the discussion to “encourage citizen participation and provide assurance in the exercise of the right to vote.”
Also, this presentation It includes running cities and regions with populations of more than 2 million to run for elections.
The presentation shows that those elected for these elections must receive 40 percent of the vote, “provided that the second-most voted candidate beats by 10 percent.” If no candidate is successful, a second round will be held in three weeks.
“The article is included to give legitimacy to the elections of mayors and governors, thereby gaining public support for government plans,” the presentation said.
This figure will be valid even for Bogotá in the 2023 regional elections as ratified in a past constitutional reform.
(On the other hand: Political reform: What are the special interests of the Pact?)
It also included a sinking clause in the Senate that says you must be over the age of 18, not 25, as stated in Article 177 of the Constitution, to be a candidate for the House.
The idea is that anyone over the age of 18 can search for seats. with the aim of “promoting and guaranteeing the political participation of youth”.
There are also changes for the Senate. If the reform is approved as-is, you will need to be over 25 to become a senator, not 30 as the law currently states.
The presentation did not include the extension of the terms of office of the President, Congress, governorships, assemblies, mayors and councils. This would be a controversial proposal from the Conservative Party, as explained by the speaker.
As a matter of fact, the same Interior Minister, Alfonso Prada, said, “The government does not want the extension of the term and does not support the extension of even one day of the four years in which it was elected.”
The initiative also raises some notable points, such as allowing party changes for college body members “without giving up the seat or incurring double militancy.”
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