Today, the European Parliament with an absolute majority of its component members passed a reform of EU electoral law, strengthening the European dimension of EU elections and rendering them more transparent and democratic.
S&D Group spokesperson for constitutional affairs and Parliament negotiator for the reform, Jo Leinen, said:
“The reform of the European electoral law is a necessary and much awaited step forward for European citizens. After almost three years of intensive negotiations, the European Council finally reached a unanimous agreement on this crucial issue. In 2014, Europeans had a direct say on the future President of the European Commission for the first time. By increasing the awareness of the link between the national parties and candidates running in the elections and their affiliation with a European political party, the reform further enhances the “Spitzenkandidaten”-process, thus ensuring that next year’s election is more than just 28 separate national elections but a truly European one. This is the first successful reform for more than 40 years, and opens the door for subsequent steps to further improve European democracy.
“The new rules will also render the elections more accessible, by giving the right to vote to EU-citizens living in third countries outside of the EU, which will benefit millions of citizens. The possibility of introducing postal and electronic voting will provide the citizens with more options to take part in the elections. Measures against double-voting will contribute to increased trust in the electoral process.”