Armenian parliament rejects electoral reforms in second reading

The draft law proposing reforms to the Electoral Code did not secure enough votes at the National Assembly Monday session to get a final approval.Only sixty-two lawmakers supported the bill which required 63 positive votes to pass the second reading (as a proposed amendment to a constitutional legislation).

At the first reading last Monday, the measure received as many as 56 votes “in favor”.The draft legislation proposes, in particular, a complete transition to the proportional representation system (by abolishing the rating-based voting), lowering of the minimum threshold (by 1%) necessary for securing seats in the legislative, and a lower amount for the electoral pawn.

Among the members of the former ruling Republican Party of Armenia (RPA), Vice Speaker Arpine Hovhannisyan and Chairman of the Standing Committee on Foreign Relations Armen Ashotyan voted against the bill. No ballot was cast by Vahram Baghdasaryan, the leader of the parliamentary faction.

Speaker Ara Babloyan and Vice Speaker Eduard Sharmazanov (both members of the RPA faction) did not attend the hearing.