Euro Sham Elections or Stealth Democracy

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Today people across Europe are voting for those politicians who will theoretically represent them before the European Parliament. Unfortunately, just like with Spain’s unrepresentative electoral system, many EU states’ Parliament members are elected through closed lists — where only the candidate at the top of each list has actually been publicly debated — is a total sham, completely void of accountability, and a mind-boggling offense to the taxpayers and their wallets.

For example, I was just looking at the present list of Spanish members of the European Parliament. I don’t think I recognized a single one. There were 54 of them from a handful of parties, including 22 from PP and 24 from PSOE. So imagine that of these 22 PP and 24 PSOE elected officials only two of them were ever publicly debated or vetted prior to the election, and the remainder’s qualifications were never discussed. They are like stealth politicians, flying below the radar, and as a result, their performance is never publicly evaluated to determine whether they deserve to continue receiving the salary that we, the tax-payers, finance.

It is no wonder then that EU elections have such incredibly low voter turn-out. As long as the voter is so far removed from their so-called elected officials and is therefore not treated as a constituent, the EU will continue to lack real, voter-earned political legitimacy.

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2 Comments

Filed under Essays, Living la vida española

2 responses to “Euro Sham Elections or Stealth Democracy

  1. You are referring to European Parliament elections in Spain (and a few other countries).

    In Ireland you vote for the candidate with a transferable vote.

    Candidates are not actually elected under many European list systems. This is a big weakness.

  2. eric

    I don’t see why Europeans wouldn’t prefer a system more like the U.S. House of Representatives where each individual parliament seat would be assigned to a special geographical population and the corresponding member directly voted by those constituents.

    Good thing the closed lists are only practiced in a few countries then.

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