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Bulgarian Parliament Turns Down President's Election Code Veto
Bulgarian MPs rejected on Tuesday a veto imposed by President Rosen Plevneliev on the new Election code.
Out of 218 MPs, 138 voted against the veto, hours after it had already been thrown off by the parliamentary committee working on the code, chaired by Deputy Parliament Speaker Maya Manolova, as Bulgarian website Dnevnik.bg reports.
Plevneliev's reversal of the legislation, which was combined with proposal for amendment in key areas, was turned down due to opposition by the ruling Bulgarian Socialist Party and ethnic Turkish Movement for Rights and Freedoms (DPS), as well as by ultranationalist Ataka.
Opposition party GERB was the only one to vote in favour of the veto, as its MPs believe the new code enables the ruling parties to cling to power.
President Rosen Plevneliev announced on Friday he was turning back the Election Code, stating that it did not meet social expectations. He declared himself strongly against the new rules on appointing members of the Central Electoral Commission, as it gives Parliament the power to elect its leaders (this is currently done by the President).
The preference threshold at local and EU elections, which allows voters to arrange their party's list of municipal councilors or MEPs, was also subject to criticism by Plevneliev. The head of state claimed that the option to choose an MEPs is made void by the condition that if no preference is marked on a ballot, a vote goes to the candidate heading a list.
Plevneliev did not attend the plenary session that was held on his veto.
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