During a question-and-answer session in parliament on Wednesday the head of the Armenian government said that the primary change should concern the system of representation under which the next parliament will be elected.
According to the current laws, candidates are elected to parliament both on party lists and in individual races. The pro-Pashinian majority faction in parliament, My Step, suggests that the current system be replaced with an all-proportional ballot.
Pashinian said that holding early elections under the current or new electoral code was not part of the political agreement reached with the parliamentary opposition.
“But during all our discussions I asked our colleagues, including in parliament, about what they think about the voting system, in other words, whether they think that the rating system should remain or should be scrapped. During our discussions we registered that both the Prosperous Armenia party and the Bright Armenia party leave this matter to the discretion of the parliamentary majority,” Pashinian said.
“They [Prosperous Armenia and Bright Armenia] said they would not vote for the changes because they don’t want to share political responsibility with us, but they said that if we want to change it, they have no problem with it.”
The prime minister added that as a result of discussions with extra-parliamentary parties and representatives of civil society as well as taking into account the government’s earlier commitments My Step decided that simple changes to the electoral code are needed.
“So, the elections will be held under an all-proportional system, i.e. without a rating system,” Pashinian said.
In their recent public statements representatives of the Prosperous Armenia and Bright Armenia parties said they did not find it advisable that changes be made in the electoral code before the June 20 elections. They indicated, however, that their political parties will participate in the elections in any case.
In this regard Pashinian joked that “political agreements have nuances and sometimes the weather also influences them.” “But we will live up to our commitments,” he concluded.