Lauchenoirian Guardian

Lauchenoirian Guardian

New constitution: what will it look like?
13th June 2019

Last year’s civil war ended upon the signing of the Haven Accords in Sanctaria. Amongst other things, the Accords mandated the drafting of a new constitution, to be passed by the new parliament following elections. The elections are scheduled for Sunday, and it is expected that a vote on the new constitution will take place shortly after.

The previous constitution, originally written in 1952, was heavily criticised by opponents of communism as it had been written by the communist regime following their revolution and the nine-day first civil war in that year. It was heavily amended in 1993, to allow non-communist political parties and limited private enterprise.

It remained controversial, however, due to it limiting the size of the federal parliament to 120 MPs – which many say is an attempt to favour the Communist party, encouraging voters to stick to larger parties so their votes have more influence. It is known the Communist Party has always favoured keeping the number of representatives low. The 1952 constitution has also been widely criticised, especially on Aeluria and in Yervia, for favouring the federal government over those of the provinces.

The current draft of the constitution, which is broadly expected to pass without much further alteration, would increase the size of the federal parliament to 360 MPs. It would keep the current system of proportional representation on a provincial level, trebling the number of representatives for each province. This sparked controversy, as smaller provinces such as Aeluria have been overrepresented, but after much deliberation it was agreed that the distribution of representatives would not be altered. The new constitution will mandate that elections for each level of government must take place at least every four years.

The new constitution also grants provinces more powers and rights. The powers devolved to Aeluria before their independence referendum will be granted to other provinces as well – something popular in Yervia but controversial on Aeluria. However, interim Prime Minister Keitha Noguera, herself a former leader of the Aelurian Independence Party, supported the measure which went a long way to allaying any Aelurian fears that they would be once again side-lined.

Electoral processes and devolution were the most controversial aspects of the new constitution, and took the longest to be agreed by all parties. Other aspects were almost universally agreed – including enshrining the rights of groups such as ethnic minorities, disabled people and members of the LGBT+ community in the new constitution.

The prohibition of all tobacco products and other recreational drugs has also been removed from the constitution – though it is expected the federal parliament will pass other legislation to keep such things illegal, at least for the time being. This was a key demand of Aeluria, along with the removal of the clause prohibiting religious schooling. The specific reference to schooling was indeed removed, but the commitment to secular government remains, ensuring state-funded schools remain free from religion, but permitting the formation of religious private schools.

The new constitution is the product of months of debate and discussion, and aims to heal the divisions in Lauchenoiria which were the cause of the war and the cause of so much suffering. Interim Prime Minister Keitha Noguera said on the subject: “this is the beginning of a new chapter in Lauchenoiria, and I hope one where we can all come together and move on from the things that have divided us in the past. I hope this new constitution will mark a new era of cooperation in Lauchenoirian politics, and that we can finally put the war behind us.”

Parliamentary voting intention, 13/06/19 (change from previous poll on 11/06/19 shown)
Liberal Party: 25.2% (+0.3)
Communist Party: 16.1% (-0.2)
Conservative Party: 15.7% (+0.5)
Green Party: 15.7% (+0.7)
Left Alliance: 8.8% (+0.2)
Lauchenoiria First: 6.2% (-0.4)
Lauchenoirian Democratic Alliance: 5.2% (-0.3)
Pacifist Party: 3.6% (+0.1)
Feminist Party: 1.8% (-0.5)
Anarchist Party of Yervia: 0.9% (-)
Social Democratic Party: 0.6% (-0.1)
Aelurian Independence Party (AIP): 0.1% (-)

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