MP L.Bold has prepared a set of draft amendments which seek to change nearly 80 percent of the present laws on elections to Parliament. The draft, developed with help from Honored Lawyer B.Chimed and a former Minister for the Interior, J.Amarsanaa, includes suggestions received from the Government and the General Election Committee. Its main feature is its recommendation of the proportional representation system enabling voters to select both the candidate and the party. L.Bold answers questions on the draft.
Your draft proposes a system that is totally new in
The draft calls for a voter to be given two lists – one, to choose the party or coalition of parties, and the other, to choose the individual candidate. He will indicate his choice for both.
Can the voter then vote for DP and then for the candidate from MPRP?
Will the candidates’ list be made by the party?
Yes. The political parties will make the list. Maybe someone in a party head will put the name of his favored man above the others’ but the candidate will be elected MP only of he gets majority votes. This way, the man favored by the party may not always win.
What about non-party candidates?
An independent candidate will be required to be a resident of the constituency and will need signatures from at least 801 voters supporting him. He will be declared a candidate only after the signatures are found valid by the local Governor’s office.
The previous proportional representation system was abandoned because voters could choose only the party and thus made it easy for members of a coterie within a party to enter Parliament. Will your draft be better?
Parliament will have members chosen by a proportional system, but they will not be the choice of the party leadership after the election. Voters will have the list of that party’s proposed MPs when they cast their vote. This way, we are preempting the possibility that a group in a party will call the shots.
So applicants for nomination as candidates may lobby the party leader, but the people will decide whether to select him or not?
Yes. No matter how much his party wants him, he has to get ordinary voters’ support.
How many constituencies do you propose? Will they be large or small? Or will there be only one national constituency as in the Presidential election?
The constituencies will be large and will elect many candidates. They will be demarcated following a method used in developed countries.
What is this like?
The draft explains this in detail. We seek to demarcate constituencies in a way that all of them will have around the same number of voters and elect the same number of candidates. Several provinces in the countryside and 2-3 districts in UB city will be combined to form one constituency.
If the electoral strength in a constituency is still lower than the calculated average, some bordering soums or districts can be included in it. The number of people allotted to any polling center will also be kept manageable. This could be from 100-1,000 in soums, fromm 2,000-3,000 in provincial centers, and from 2,000-4,000 in UB districts.
Will the system be able to put and to the practice of candidates promising or distributing money to voters?
We have covered that issue in the draft. The candidates will not campaign as individuals but only on behalf of the party, which will organize all meetings. A candidate will interact with people only during the party’s campaign and will not be allowed to promise anything not included in the party’s platform or to spend money beyond what is approved for the party. No one will be allowed to enroll underage children in campaigning.
Is this method used commonly abroad?
There are many countries that use it.