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Proposal to reform the Constitution will go to a Senate commission

SD. The legislative proposal which will convene the National Revising Assembly to reform the Constitution and establish the consecutive presidential reelection will have its first test tomorrow in the National Congress, due to the fact that in the Senate the initiative will be subject to a vote as to whether it is remitted to a special commission to be studied or not.

Regarding this question, the president of the Upper Chamber, Cristina Lizardo, argued that “for the issue to be treated it should be well established and needs to have the participation of each one of the legislators.”

The legislator let it be known that this process will take some time. She also said that she could not issue a judgment regarding whether this project will be approved or not, but that her expectations were very optimistic.

A proposal to seek a consensus

The spokesman for the bloc of Dominican Liberation Party (PLD) deputies, Ruben Maldonado, said that since no one has talked with the legislators, they are waiting to seek the consensus with them. He said that in the meetings that they had with Senators and deputies they were only told about the content of the legislative proposal to reform the Constitution.

He assured reporters that the constitutional reform still does not have the necessary votes in Congress. He alleged that few times in history has the Political Committee met with its legislators in order to establish a party line.

He recalled his constitutional law about voting in favor or against a Law and that when the Magna Carta is modified “it is not the signatures the of the members of the Political Committee nor of any political leader that is going to stay imprinted on the paper in order to permit the reelection, but rather that of each member of Congress.”

Maldonado believes that they should respond to the will of those who elected them, who are not the members of the PLD leadership body or a party.

A call for obliging acceptance of the decision

Because he feels that this week will be crucial for achieving the approval in the National Congress of this legislative proposal, Senator Charlie Mariotti called on the members of the Political Committee of the PLD to ask for and require their congressional members to accept their decision.

For him what is in play is the legitimacy of the maximum PLD governing body because they run the risk of being reduced to nothing, “suddenly knocked out.” “The members of the Political Committee all have to raise their voice, each one, and ask and require that they (the legislators) comply with what was voted on and with what the decision was,” he emphasized.

When it was suggested that he made this appeal because reelection still did not have sufficient votes to be approved in the National Congress, the senator answered that he didn’t know about that and that if he were part of the body (the Political Committee) that would be the position that he would take.

“If I were a member of the Political Committee I would be calling on the president of the party (Leonel Fernandez) and each and every one of the members of the legislative blocks for compliance with the party mandate, period!” He said.

He insisted that “in 15 days anything passes. Now in this crucial week is when the Political Committee should send a clear message.”

LF should be the first

Mariotti noted that former President Leonel Fernandez, as president of the PLD, should be the first to make sure that the decision of the highest leadership body in the PLD is obeyed. “He should be the guarantor for maintaining the legitimacy of the Political Committee,” he declared.

He questioned as to who would be the arbitrator in the PLD regarding its aspiring candidates to elective positions if the top of the PLD is “knocked out.”

He said that if the group of Congressional members does not accept the mandate of their party “the Political Committee will be the great loser in all of this.”

The voting: simple or qualified?

The legislators differ regarding the number of votes that are required in each chamber in order to approve the Law which will serve to convene the National Revising Assembly. Mariotti and Lizardo believe that it should be approved by a simple majority. Maldonado does not agree with them, because he says it should be approved by a two thirds majority of the votes cast. Article 270 of the Magna Carta only says that the need for a constitutional reform has to be declared by a law. Article 271 says that in order to reform the Constitution they require the two thirds parts of the votes of those present at the National Revising Assembly.

Source: DiarioLibre

May 5, 2015

Category: DR News |

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