[EDITORIALS]Plenty of politicians now

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[EDITORIALS]Plenty of politicians now

t is deplorable that a National Assembly advisory council proposed to increase the number of seats in the unicameral legislature. The Constitutional Court had ruled that the current electoral district system is unconstitutional because the largest district has a population more than three times of that of the smallest one. The electoral districts will be revised, but there is no reason to increase the number of Assembly seats. The nation’s distrust of politicians did not stem from the insufficient number of lawmakers.
The national political reform council under the Assembly’s Political Reform Special Committee proposed that the number of Assembly seats be increased from 273 to 299. The council wants to cut the number of directly elected lawmakers to 199 from 227 and increase the number of lawmakers chosen through a proportional representation system to 100 from 46. The council said the plan would reinforce lawmakers’ professional expertise in policymaking and reduce the numbers of electoral districts.
There is, however, no guarantee that the lawmakers will perform better when more are elected through the proportional representation system. Until now, political parties chose lawmakers through the proportional representation system by weighing their loyalty and contribution. There is no way to monitor the fairness of the process. It is likely to be degraded as a way for the leaders to strengthen their influence. Why does the Assembly want to increase the number, risking the criticism that it limits the people’s voting rights?
The debate should not be going in the direction of adding more seats. Politicians, however, are trying to increase the number of seats in a selfish attempt to protect their established rights. The ruling camp supports it to enhance its political force.
People want to reform politics by rooting out corruption and ending inappropriate relationships between the businessmen and politicians. We have enough lawmakers to represent us. The Assembly should adjust some electoral districts to respect the Constitutional Court’s ruling and stop driving political reforms in the wrong direction.
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