The Coalition for Free and Fair Elections has decided to offer its support to the Legal Committee for appointments and immunities which has recently been tasked with conducting an ample analysis of the framework that was used to invalidate the Chisinau municipality new local elections (Parliament Decision no. 126 of 11 July 2018).

Hence, the Coalition has provided the Parliamentary Commission with an opinion statement concerning international examples on electoral campaigning regulation. The statement addresses all of the bullet points contained in the Parliament Decision, covering subjects such as international electoral standards and invalidation criteria; use of internet and social networks in electoral campaigns in consolidated democracies; international experience in regulation of electoral silence, etc.

The opinion takes into consideration studies and relevant statements by groups of experts from the European Council, Venice Commission, ECHR jurisprudence, examples from the legislations of a series of EU and North American countries, etc.

The Coalition also provides a series of recommendations, among which are improvements to the regulation of election day silence, taking into consideration the recommendations of relevant organizations; adoption of the Canadian model on regulating online political agitation and advertising; the necessity of amending the legislation to specify whether courts can invalidate elections by default, in absence of a well-argued petition and of relevant supporting evidence, submitted by the voters, electoral bodies, or candidates that have participated in the ballot.

The Civic Coalition for Free and Fair Elections considers that the multiple issues mentioned in the opinion statement submitted to the Parliament could be solved in a quick and qualified manner, through the much anticipated decision of the Constitutional Court on Petition 106b of 20 July 2018, concerning the interpretation of certain Constitutional provisions. Therefore, the Coalition’s main recommendation is for the Parliament to approach the High Court, in an effort to obtain an expedited decision on said Petition.

Click here for the full text of the Opinion submitted to the Parliament in Romanian.