President Bronislaw Komorowski on Tuesday sent to the Sejm (lower house) draft amendments to the Constitution eliminating a legal barrier to introducing single-member constituencies in elections to the Sejm.
An amendment to the Constitution will make it possible to start a debate on changing the electoral law. "And I want Poles to answer in a referendum how these changes are to look like and in which direction they are to go," the president said, adding that the changes would have to be passed by parliament.
On Monday President Komorowski declared that he wanted a referendum on single-member constituencies, abolishing the state-budget financing of political parties, and tax law changes. In order to introduce single-member constituencies it is necessary to amend the Constitution.
The president also announced that he would submit a draft call for a referendum to the Senate probably on Wednesday. According to the president, a referendum could be held in early September.
"Work on the draft call is nearly completed. It will be sent to the Senate in accordance with the Constitution, which means that it will happen very quickly. I think that maybe tomorrow," President Komorowski said.
To call a referendum, the president needs the Senate's consent. The Senate has 14 days from receiving the president's draft proposal to reach a decision in the form of a resolution. During those two weeks the draft is reviewed by the relevant Senate committees. The president may be asked for additional information about the draft.
The Senate resolution is passed with an absolute majority of votes, with at least half the senators present. If approved, a given referendum must be held within 90 days of the Senate's decision.
"The point is to enable Poles to vote in a referendum which is not held during the summer vacations. So I think that early September will be a good date," the president said.
He added that he hoped main rightwing oppositionist Law and Justice (PiS) reconsidered its "staunch and unbending" position on single-member constituencies.
According to the president, Poles will support changes enabling the introduction of a single-member constituency system. (PAP)