Party like it’s 1789 in Egypt?

March 20th, 2011

Egypt has just voted on (and ratified?) its new Constitution. Here’s how the process worked:

Voters were being asked to cast ballots to say ‘yes’ or ‘no’ to the entire package of nine changes. Preliminary results will be announced Sunday.

A “yes” vote would allow parliamentary and presidential elections to be held later this year or early in the next. A “no” vote could force the military to extend the six-month deadline it has set for the handover of power to an elected civilian government.

I previously asked who would be the Egyptian James Madison. How was this Constitution drawn up?

The constitutional amendments drawn up by a panel of military-appointed legal scholars are intended to bring just enough change to the current constitution — which the military suspended after coming to power — to ensure that upcoming presidential and parliamentary elections are free and fair.

They would open the elections to independent and opposition candidates and restore full judicial supervision of votes, a measure seen as key to preventing fraud.

They would also limit presidents to two four-year terms, and curtail 30-year-old emergency laws that give police near-unlimited powers.


This Constitution was overwhelmingly approved.

Egyptian voters overwhelmingly approved changes in the constitution, opening the way for parliamentary and presidential elections within months, according to final results from a landmark referendum announed Sunday. . .

Elections commission chief Ahmed Attiya said 41 percent of 45 million eligible voters cast ballots in Saturday’s referendum. More than 14 million — 77.2 percent — voted in favor, with around 4 million — 22.8 percent — opposed.

Let’s see how this works out.