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New Opposition MPs Bring Albanian Parliament Back to Qualified Majority

New Opposition MPs Bring Parliament Back to Qualified Majority

The recent additions to the opposition have brought back the possibility of arriving at a qualified majority of 3/5 in Parliament. Several new PD and LSI MPs were recently approved by the Central Election Commission (KQZ). A qualified majority consists of 3/5 of the 140 MPs, or 84 MPs.

Currently the governing Socialist Party holds 75 seats, whereas the Democratic Party holds 2 (with 3 additional MPs approved by the KQZ, and one more currently in waiting), LSI 6 (with 3 approved by the KQZ) and 4 MPs outside parliamentary groups, of which 2 vote generally with the PS, and 2 others nominally belong to the opposition.

As the new opposition members of the PD have been expelled from their party structures, it remains a question of how they will vote. However, all PS MPs together with the “renegade” MPs of the LSI, which until two years ago was in a coalition with the PS, make up 84 seats.

This opens a possible scenario of passing the Electoral Reform and, perhaps, Constitutional amendments by means of a qualified majority without any discernible opposition. In other words, as long as the KQZ continues its quest to find willing opposition MPs ever lower on the opposition’s candidate list, the Rama government may be able to fill Parliament with an opposition that at least to the Eurocrats will look legitimate.

Whether the opposition’s strategy of leaving the Parliament will turn out to be successful in its aim therefore depends greatly on the grip  parties will have on their “renegade” MPs.

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