New Politics Proposal Is Out
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New Politics Proposal Is Out

Bangkok Post:
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Core leaders of the People’s Alliance for Democracy (PAD) movement have devised a new proportional election system in which some members of the Thai House of Representatives would be elected from their constituencies while the remainder would be elected from various professions.
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/>Speaking at a press conference at Government House which the protesters have occupied since August 26, retired Maj-Gen Chamlong Srimuang, a PAD core leader, said that under the group’s recently proposed ‘New Politics’ system, greatly changed from an earlier proposal, it would create a fair and level playing field and simultaneously “prevent capitalists from dominating the House“.
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/>The country will remain under a democratic system with the King as head of the state, he said.
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/>Under the previous so-called ‘New Politics’ system, the PAD called for 70 per cent of House seats to be filled by appointees, with the remainder being elected.
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/>Critics of the proposal suggest that having a Parliament with only 30 per cent of its seats filled by voters is not moving toward, but away from, participatory democratic government.
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/>The change in the proposed the ‘New Politics’ system came after the PAD core leaders on Sunday held closed-door discussions with about 10 academics at Government House, in which they were able to discuss the system.
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/>PAD co-leader Somsak Kosaisuk said his group will organise a brainstorming session again this Saturday and with some 40-50 political, economic and social experts invited to attend. He said the ‘New Politics’ system should allow the public to scrutinise politicians and the government must allocate a budget to people from various professions to gather.

/>Actually, they are still sparse on details. In Matichon Chamlong denies early reports they were moving to a 50-50 model, but doesn’t state what the functional constituency/profession group vs geographical constituency breakdown will be. He also says that the representatives from the professions will be elected and not selected or appointed. Abhisit is cautious saying it is more suited for the Senate (so he no longer wishes to have a fully elected Senate?) whereas the PPP spokesman views it negatively.
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/>BP: So if geographical constituencies become corrupted through vote-buying, what is to stop professions from also going down that route? So far it is still a plan in process.