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Fico says Slovakia’s election system will change only if opposition agrees

Smer party has been contemplating changes to the country’s election system for some time but Smer leader Robert Fico said at a press conference on March 26 that this would be feasible only if an agreement is reached with opposition parties, the TASR newswire reported. "We want to discuss the election system with the other parties… I promise that we won't approve any changes without consensus with the relevant political parties," Fico stated, as quoted by TASR. Asked how many parties would have to consent to changes, Fico said Smer would seek the consent of a constitutional majority (90 votes) and Smer has 83 MPs.

Smer party has been contemplating changes to the country’s election system for some time but Smer leader Robert Fico said at a press conference on March 26 that this would be feasible only if an agreement is reached with opposition parties, the TASR newswire reported.

"We want to discuss the election system with the other parties… I promise that we won't approve any changes without consensus with the relevant political parties," Fico stated, as quoted by TASR. Asked how many parties would have to consent to changes, Fico said Smer would seek the consent of a constitutional majority (90 votes) and Smer has 83 MPs.

"It wouldn't make any sense to change the election system if there is no agreement," Fico said, as quoted by TASR adding that it is not his goal to change the system to only benefit Smer.

Smer is considering only 100 MPs rather than the current 150 and reportedly some opposition parties are not against this change either.

"Obviously we have no problem with reducing the number of MPs but we want to know if the election system will change and how," said Most-Híd leader Béla Bugár, adding that his party's stance will be released once a specific proposal exists.

Miroslav Beblavý from the Slovak Democratic and Christian Union (SDKÚ) said he was not impressed by Smer's intentions. "I view it [the idea of cutting the number of MPs] as a populist fad and don't feel the need to comment on it as yet," he said.

TASR wrote that the Ordinary People and Independent Personalities (OĽaNO) and Freedom and Solidarity (SaS) parties are likely going to support Smer's proposal as they have suggested to reduce the number of MPs on numerous occasions – albeit several years after Fico first started to discuss this issue.

Source: TASR

Compiled by Zuzana Vilikovská from press reports
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