Equal Voting Rights and Procedures for all EU Citizens in EP elections
Not all EU citizens have equal rights to vote in the European Parliament (EP) election.
An Irish citizen who lives in The Netherlands cannot vote for Irish Members of European Parliament (MEPs), while a Danish citizen can vote for his country’s constituency even if he resides in another EU member state. However, a Danish citizen living in the US cannot vote at all, while a French citizen can. Some can only use postal voting, some can only vote at diplomatic posts (sometimes very far away), others enjoy both, and sometimes proxy voting or even e-voting (only in Estonia).
While a short list of common provisions have to be observed by all, such as proportional representation, voters in some member states can only vote for a list in order of candidates pre-determined by the corresponding political party (closed list), while others can change the order of candidates on the list to choose to prioritize the ones that they believe are more qualified (preferential vote with varying degrees of liberty).
National electoral law determines voting rights and procedures, but now is the time to stop hiding behind constitutional or legal complexities, and take a step forward with our democracy in Europe.
MEPs are the only directly elected representatives of the European, and we need them to be elected by and represent all EU citizens.
We need Equal Voting Rights and Procedures for all EU Citizens in EP elections !
- Spokesperson CECILIA MALMSTRÖM - Home Affairs
- Spokesperson for Viviane REDING Justice, Fundamental Rights and Citizenship
- Commissioner for Employment, Social Affairs & Inclusion
- President of the European Council
Herman VAN ROMPUY
- European Council, Commission and Parliament
- President of the European Parliament
- European Commission
- President of the European Commission
Jean-Claude Juncker (President of the European Commission)
Dear European Leaders,
We believe that Europe is the way of the future for our 28 countries/member states.
We believe that, in addition to rights and duties, European citizenship is about a sense of belonging to a broader transnational family with whom we share a common set of values, aspirations and strong ties built throughout history.
We believe that embracing European citizenship does not mean denying national or regional identities, but rather enriching ourselves as a modern community ready for a prominent role in the world today and tomorrow.
We believe that democratic participation is essential to the construction of the European Union for the 21st century.
We believe that the European Parliament represents EU citizens and not only citizens in the EU.
We believe in it, we act on it.
With Europeans Abroad Vote 2014, we are taking an unprecedented step towards changing the way expatriates engage in EU policy.
Expatriates are in a unique position to truly embrace and embody European citizenship through their life experience abroad. And wherever they live, they must have the same voting rights as any other European.
Today, EU citizens of Cyprus, Ireland, Malta and Slovakia who live in other EU member states do not have the right to vote for their native national constituency in European Parliament elections while in the state where they reside. Furthermore, EU citizens of Belgium, Cyprus, Denmark, Greece, Ireland, Italy, Malta and Slovakia, cannot vote in European Parliament elections when they live in a country outside the EU. There are also many other eligibility criteria, such as limited voting procedures or lack of information and communication that can make participation challenging for those who do not live in their country of origin.
We are determined to bring about the change that is required to make the EU a more modern and vibrant democracy, considerate of all its citizens and ready to take our society forward with confidence and a renewed sense of European citizenship regardless of the country of residence.
Therefore, we ask the heads of states at the European Council, the next European Commission and the next Members of European Parliament to reform the electoral law to ensure equal voting rights in European Parliament elections for EU citizens regardless of residence, and provide access to uniform voting procedures including at least two possible methods to cast the vote (at polling stations and by postal voting, proxy or e-voting), as well as a generalization of the preferential voting system as opposed to closed lists that leave more control to political parties.
European Citizens Abroad started this petition with a single signature, and now has 1,048 supporters. Start a petition today to change something you care about.
Today: European Citizens Abroad is counting on you
European Citizens Abroad needs your help with “Council of the European Union: Equal Voting Rights and Procedures for all EU Citizens in EP elections”. Join European Citizens Abroad and 1,047 supporters today.