The Lower House on Tuesday referred the 2012 elections draft law to its legal committee despite protests by some lawmakers who had demanded the bill be repealed, saying it does not answer to reform requirements or help to build a modern civil state. But the legislature turned down Senate amendments to the divisive civil retirement bill, changes that would block any pensions for retired MPs who had served in public office for less than ten years. A majority voted for the election document’s referral to the panel during a session held under Speaker Abdul Karim Dughmi and attended by Prime Minister Awn Khasawneh and cabinet ministers.
At the outset of today’s session, up to 75 lawmakers aired their views on the legislation, submitted to the House by Khasawneh’s government on Sunday, arguing that the bill is balanced as it gives room for all social segments to run for seats under the dome. The law in question embraces a mixed electoral system featuring a majority vote in the governorates and a closed proportional list at the national level, while raising House seats to 138, including 15 designated for the women’s quota.