New electoral law approved – 17 yr olds get the vote, 50 seat bonus remains

Greek Parliament / Deutsche Welle

eKathimerini — Parliament approved by a simple majority on Thursday night the government’s proposed changes to the electoral system, with 179 votes in favour, 86 against and 16 abstentions  meaning that 17-year-olds will be able to vote in the next general elections but also that the 50-seat bonus for the winning party will remain in place for the next election and will be abolished in the elections after the next.

The coalition needed the backing of a minimum of 200 MPs for the bonus to be scrapped immediately, rather than after the next elections. However, this target never appeared to be within Prime Minister Alexis Tsipras’s grasp and he had to settle for support just from the nine MPs of the Union of Centrists and two independent lawmakers, beyond the votes from SYRIZA and Independent Greeks deputies.