President János Áder sent the election procedures bill to the Constitutional Court for preliminary legal review yesterday, as forecast by the prime minister last Friday.
Áder stressed in a statement that the bill passed by Parliament on November 26 guarantees free and democratic elections.
However, he objected to the ban on political advertisements on commercial radio and television stations during campaigns, saying this violates both the right to freedom of opinion and the freedom of the press.
It is also an unnecessary restriction that state-run media cannot broadcast party advertisements in the 48 hours prior to the elections, Áder said.
The President also considers it unconstitutional that the bill specifies a six-day moratorium on publishing surveys of support for political parties.
He also found worrisome a regulation requiring citizens to register to vote where their official residence is, saying this is a restriction on those who travel or work abroad.
Áder did not find fault with the bill’s most controversial aspect, the requirement that all citizens must register in order to vote.
This is the first time that Áder has referred a bill to the Constitutional Court since he became head of state in May. The Court has 30 days to rule on his concerns.