Nomination of candidates EP elections made simpler
It will henceforth be simpler for European Union (EU) citizens residing in a country other than their country of origin to have themselves nominated a candidate in the European Parliament elections. This will, however, require a number of sections of the Electoral Act to first be amended. The Electoral Council is happy with the proposed changes. These changes are intended to enter into effect by the next European Parliament elections, in 2014.
Lowering the threshold
EU citizens are presently already able to put themselves forward as a candidate in the EU country in which they currently reside, but the associated procedure will now be simplified. Presently, such a citizen is required to submit a declaration proving that he has not been deprived of his right to stand for election in his country of origin. In the future, a personal declaration to that effect will suffice. The Member State in which the EU citizen is nominated a candidate is to check itself whether the citizen is barred from doing so.
This measure lowers the threshold for EU citizens who do not live in their 'own' Member State to participate in the European Parliament elections.
Role of the Electoral Council
One contact point is allocated per Member State. The Electoral Council, in its capacity as the central electoral committee, will serve as the contact point for the Netherlands. The Electoral Council, in its advice to the minister, proposes that the Minister of Public Safety and Justice be charged with preparing and issuing the formal declaration of candidacy, as the minister disposes of the information required for this purpose. The Electoral Council subsequently expedites the declaration to the responsible authorities.