New Electoral Code provides for end to re-election and 10-year terms for senators

New Electoral Code provides for end to re-election and 10-year terms for senators


Senator Marcelo Castro (MDB-PI) presented this Thursday (29) the main points of the new Electoral Code. The new rule intends to end reelection, establish terms of 10 for senators and five years for other elected positions. Castro must present the full report for the complementary bill (PLP) 112/2021 by next week at the Constitution and Justice Commission (CCJ). The announcement was made after a meeting between party leaders.

Castro, who is the rapporteur of PLP 112/2021, stated that the new Electoral Code has almost 900 articles and consolidates seven electoral and party laws into a single text. The proposal has already been approved by the Chamber of Deputies. The senator will present three proposed amendments to the Constitution (PECs) with the new rules, but only the one with the greatest support will be voted on. The difference between the texts is the occurrence or not of coincidence in general and municipal elections.

Ineligibility for 8 years

The opinion determines that in all cases the ineligibility will be for 8 years and will be valid from January 1st of the year following the election, without the need for a final judgment, informed the Senate Agency. “We made it uniform and started counting the deadline from January 1st of the year following the election. What is the spirit of this? Whoever becomes ineligible is ineligible for eight years and will go through two elections without contesting an election. If you ran for office in a general election, you will miss two general elections. If you ran in the municipal election, you will be out of contention for two municipal elections,” he said.

Single deadline for non-compatibilization and quarantine

The Superior Electoral Court (TSE) establishes deadlines for occupants of various positions, such as public servants, military personnel and directors of state-owned companies, to take time off from their duties to contest the election. Castro highlighted that the decompatibilization will be standardized and must be carried out six months before the election. “Everyone who wants to be a candidate has to opt out six months before the elections, on April 2nd,” he said.

The new legislation should determine a four-year quarantine period, starting in 2026, for members of the Judiciary and military to enter politics after leaving their positions. “Today, a soldier leaves to apply. If he wins, he goes into inactivity. If he loses, he goes back to the army… he doesn’t work out. In these activities, because they are very special and cannot be close to politics, anyone who wants to be [político] will have to undergo a four-year quarantine”, explained the senator.

Electoral surpluses for parties that reach 100% of the electoral quotient

Castro stated that, if the new rule is approved, electoral surpluses will only be distributed among parties that reach 100% of the electoral quotient and to candidates that reach at least 10%. The surpluses are the seats that remain after division by the electoral quotient, an index calculated by dividing the valid votes of a state by the seats available for the contested House.

In 2021, a new rule established that only parties that reach at least 80% of the electoral quotient can compete for unfilled vacancies, and candidates must have received votes equivalent to at least 20% of this quotient. This Wednesday (28), the Federal Supreme Court (STF) overturned, by majority vote, the change that restricted party access to the device.

“We are making it clear and bringing the 100 rule to 10. Only parties that reach 100% of the electoral quotient participate in the distribution of seats, and only the candidate who has at least 10% of the electoral quotient will be elected,” said Castro. “But , if only one party reaches the electoral quotient, does it take all the seats? No. We are putting into law that, in these cases, a second party, even without reaching the electoral quotient, would participate in the division of seats”, he highlighted.

The rapporteur stated that, if no party reaches the electoral quotient, it is as if all parties had achieved it. “Everyone participates with the highest averages, and the parties with the most votes fill the vacancies,” he said.

Coincidence of general and municipal elections

Two of the proposals deal with the coincidence of general and municipal elections. One of them establishes a two-year “buffer term” in 2028, with elections coinciding in 2030.

“In the other alternative for the elections to coincide, there would not be the two-year ‘buffer term’. In 2028, the mayor would be elected for six years. So, [o mandato] would end in 2034. The governor elected in 2026 would have a re-election in 2030. He could be re-elected until 2034. Then, the elections would coincide in 2034. From 2034, there would be a general election in 2039, 2044, 2049 and so on”, explained the rapporteur.


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