< /head > Colorado Coalition for Human Rights: Changes to Iraqi Constitution Voting Rules

Tuesday, October 04, 2005

Changes to Iraqi Constitution Voting Rules

According to the Washington Post, recent changes have been passed by Iraqi leaders making it harder for Sunni Arabs to defeat the proposed Iraqi Constitution. Click here to read the article. The article explains:

Election rules hold that the constitution will be defeated if two-thirds of voters in any three of Iraq's 18 provinces vote against it _ even if it wins majority approval nationwide. Sunni Arabs have a sufficient majority in four provinces.
But on Sunday, parliament passed a new interpretation of the rules declaring that two-thirds of registered voters must vote "no" _ not two-thirds of those who actually vote. The interpretation raises the bar to a level almost impossible to meet. In a province of 1 million registered voters, for example, 660,000 would have to vote "no" _ even if that many didn't even come to the polls.


I would be interested to know what others think about the rule changes and the Constitution itself. Also, many pundits have asserted that once the Constitution passes the U.S. will withdraw most of its troops. I am not sure if Iraq is ready for a U.S. withdrawel, but I would be interested in other thoughts.

--Tom Hayes


Update 10/05/05

The Iraqi Parliament has overturned its previous rule change after international and internal pressures, click here to read more.

--Tom Hayes

1 Comments:

Blogger JB said...

According to most reports, the Iraqi Constitution was going to be passed despite the “2/3 ‎acceptance” rule anyways; the Iraqi government should have kept the rules in tact so as to ‎ensure that Sunni leaders don’t call a voting boycott (something that they have ‎predicatively done). If the rules were kept as they were, at least Sunnis would have been ‎more likely to go to the polls to try to defeat the Constitution and thereby would have ‎played a role in government. This minority participation is especially important in Iraq, ‎given the sectarian violence that currently reigns. Bringing minority groups into ‎government can have positive effects in reducing violence (e.g. the I.R.A.s recent ‎disarmament can be attributed at least in part to a power-sharing agreement (even though ‎it has now collapsed) between Protestants and Catholics in Northern Ireland.)) Keeping ‎the rules as they were would not have ended the violence in Iraq, but at least it would ‎have been a step in the right direction. Now, with the change in election rules, Sunnis ‎‎(which make up about 20% of the registered voters) will grow further disillusioned with ‎their government and support for the insurgency could likely grow.‎

3:29 PM  

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