MPs Block Bid to Lower Referendum Bar in Bulgaria

Politics | November 9, 2023, Thursday // 13:33|  views

In a decisive move, Bulgarian deputies have rejected proposals to lower the threshold for holding referendums in the country. The National Assembly, in a session today, dismissed the draft law on amendments to the Law on Direct Participation of Citizens in State Power and Local Self-Government, as put forth by the party "There Is Such A People" (TISP). This follows a similar rejection in September of a draft law by the party "Vazrazhdane." Notably, both parties have experienced unsuccessful referendum attempts.

The rejection garnered support from the votes of WCC-DB, GERB, and DPS parties, while opposition parties "Vazrazhdane" and BSP voted in favor. Independent MP Radostin Vassilev had previously left both parties and opted to "abstain" in this instance.

The proposals, presented by Slavi Trifonov's deputies (leader of TISP) in July, aimed at reducing the minimum required signatures for National Assembly consideration of referendums from 200,000 to 100,000. TISP also sought an extension of the signature collection period from three to five months. Additionally, their text proposed the removal of the requirement to provide signatures in electronic form at the Main Directorate "Civil Registration and Administrative Service."

Despite the rejection, the debate underscores ongoing discussions about citizen participation in Bulgaria's legislative processes.

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Tags: Referendum, threshold, National Assembly, TISP


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