aA
Lithuania's parliament will consider a proposal by the ruling Lithuanian Farmers and Green Union to lower the referendum threshold to amending part of constitutional chapters.
Lithuanian Constitution
Lithuanian Constitution
© DELFI (K.Čachovskio nuotr.)

57 lawmakers on Tuesday gave their initial backing to the proposal, 33 voted against and 14 abstained. The proposal will now go to parliamentary committees for consideration.

Under the proposal, the referendum threshold would be lowered for amending all articles of the 1st and 14th constitutional chapters. More than half of voters who turned out, but at least two fifths of all citizens with the right to vote, would have to say "yes" in a referendum to amend an article of Chapter 1 and Chapter 14 of the Constitution.

Currently, these chapters have a higher level of protection, and backing of at least half of all citizens is necessary to change them.

Around 2.5 million citizens are eligible to vote in Lithuania. Half of them would make 2.5 million, and two fifths would make 1 million voters.

The parliament's intention to lower the threshold has already come under fire from Lithuanian President Dalia Grybauskaitė. Mindaugas Lingė, the president's internal policy adviser, confirmed earlier in the day the president would veto the bill.

Meanwhile, Prime Minister Saulius Skvernelis said that if the Seimas decided to lower the referendum threshold, the Constitutional Court would be asked to give its opinion on the amendment.

The idea to lower the threshold for amending the 1st and 14th constitutional chapters came into being after the Seimas backed the president veto in September the parliament's previously adopted amendments on relaxing requirements on the number of votes needed to amend Article 1 of Chapter 12 of the Lithuanian Constitution, defining citizenship.

The proposal to lower the threshold comes in preparation for a dual citizenship referendum planned to be held on May 12 and May 26, 2019, in tandem with the first and second rounds of voting in the next presidential election.

Currently, people who left Lithuania after it regained independence in 1990 cannot hold dual citizenship, apart from a few exceptions. That provision can only be amended by referendum.

Advocates of dual citizenship fear that such a referendum might fail due to low turnout unless the threshold is lowered.

BNS
It is prohibited to copy and republish the text of this publication without a written permission from UAB „BNS“.
|Populiariausi straipsniai ir video

Landsberis: responsible parties could form coalition after election

Gabrielius Landsberis, leader of the opposition conservative Homeland Union – Lithuanian Christian...

Lithuania awards ex-Pentagon chief Mattis

Lithuanian President Gitanas Nauseda awarded 34 Lithuanian and foreign nationals for their merits to...

Google presented Lithuanian initiative to world

The Internet giant Google has presented its video about Debunk EU during the Google News...

Lithuania names motorway to Latvia after Baltic Way

The Lithuanian government decided to name the motorway from Vilnius to the border of Latvia "the...

Interior Minister disqualifies herself from decisions on EU funding

Lithuania's Interior Minister Rita Tamasuniene has disqualified herself from any decision-making...

Top news

Landsberis: responsible parties could form coalition after election

Gabrielius Landsberis, leader of the opposition conservative Homeland Union – Lithuanian Christian...

Top court finds restrictions on waste-to-energy plants unconstitutional

The 2018 amendments to Lithuania's Law on Waste Management that imposed a ban on building...

Ex-Pentagon chief Mattis awarded by president

Lithuanian President Gitanas Nauseda awarded 34 Lithuanian and foreign nationals for their merits to...

Lidl gives up plastic bags in Lithuania (1)

The German retail chan Lidl has given up plastic bags in Lithuania. Other major retailers say they...

Google presented Lithuanian initiative to world

The Internet giant Google has presented its video about Debunk EU during the Google News...

|Maža didelių žinių kaina