Constitution Digest

News and announcements from the Comparative Constitutions Project

June 17, 2016

US encourages Venezuela to move ahead with recall referendum. On Tuesday, US Secretary of State John Kerry waded into Venezuelan politics by urging the country's government to allow a referendum on the removal of President Nicolas Maduro, who has been accused of deliberately delaying such a vote. If the referendum takes place before January 10, 2017, Maduro's removal would trigger new elections, but his removal via a later referendum would result in Maduro's vice president serving the remainder of his term, which expires in January 2019.
South Korea's Assembly Speaker calls for constitutional amendment. Chung Sye-kyun, the Speaker of South Korea's National Assembly, suggested on Monday that his country's constitution should be amended to change the current presidential system of government. Lawmakers plan to produce a draft for referendum within 18 months, but South Korean President Park Geun-hye strongly opposes the amendment efforts.
Romanian constitutional court allows corruption cases to continue. On Wednesday, Romania's Constitutional Court declined to dismiss thousands of abuse of power charges, though the court did narrow the definition of the crime. Charges will continue against public officials indicted for acting beyond the confines of their job, but the government can no longer prosecute individuals for incompetence.
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