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The Electoral System

IzbiraThe deputies of the National Assembly, with the exception of the two representatives of minorities, are elected by means of proportional representation, with a four per cent electoral threshold required at the national level. The country is divided into eight territorial constituencies, each represented by eleven elected deputies. For the elections of the representatives of the Italian and Hungarian ethnic communities, two special constituencies are formed, one for each minority. The deputies representing the minorities are elected on the basis of the majority principle. A special right to vote in these constituencies is accorded solely to members of the indigenous minorities.

Members of the National Council who represent social, economic, professional and local interests are elected indirectly.

The President of the Republic and Mayors are elected in direct elections on the basis of an absolute majority. The candidate who receives a majority of valid votes cast is elected President. If no candidate receives an outright majority in the first round of voting, there is a second round for the two candidates who received the most votes in the first round.

According to the Constitution, the right to vote is universal and equal. Every citizen who has attained the age of eighteen years has the right to vote and stand for office. Voting is not compulsory and abstention is not sanctioned. In 1992, the turnout in the legislative elections was 85.6%, followed by 73.7% in 1996, 70.14% in 2000, and 60.6% in 2004. The voting trends correspond to those in most Western democracies, with the number of voters declining with each successive election. The greatest number of citizens takes part in legislative elections, and the smallest number in elections to local authorities.


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Date: 28.12.2007