Supreme Court To Review Voting By Mail Rules

  • 9 May 2018 9:15 AM
  • Hungary Matters
Supreme Court To Review Voting By Mail Rules
The Kúria, Hungary’s supreme court, will review the problems that emerged after the recent general election in connection with the votes cast by mail, Kúria President Péter Darák said, adding that he would convene the Board of Judges for the purpose.

In an interview aired by commercial Echo TV, Darák was asked about Prime Minister Viktor Orbán’s recent critical remark that the Kúria “had interfered with the election”.

The supreme court declared over 4,000 votes for the ruling parties, mailed from abroad by ethnic Hungarians, as invalid, saying that the ballots had been returned in envelopes other than the ones the election office had provided for the purpose.

Conveying Orbán’s position to news portal on May 5, the prime minister’s press chief said the Kúria had “clearly and seriously interfered” with the election and “stripped the voters of ruling parties of one mandate”.

Noting that the Constitutional Court had labelled the Kúria decision illegitimate, Bertalan Havasi quoted Orbán as saying that the supreme court was “intellectually unfit” for its responsibilities.

Darák said that the Kúria was authorised by the Constitution to safeguard and examine the fairness of the election and, in case of an appeal for legal remedy, review episodes of the vote.

Asked if the Kúria had passed “a politically motivated ruling”, Darák said the judges were “governed by their own professional rules”.

The factors mentioned by the critical media as proofs of bias are “disputable”, he said.

Darák called it “disturbing” that the Constitutional Court’s stance “might be in conflict” with the position of the National Election Office, the National Election Committee and the Kúria.

He said there are two options for clarifying the situation: either the Constitutional Court and the Kúria should discuss which interpretation is in line with the constitution, or parliament should pass a legislation.

Darák said the Board of Judges would reconsider all critical issues and draw the conclusions.

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Local Opinion: PM In Conflict With Supreme Court

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