Mixed Electoral System (Experience of Elections of People’s Deputies of Ukraine in 2002)

The issue of the new law for the election of the next Verkhovna Rada of Ukraine was open almost immediately after the election campaign in 1998. Changing the electoral system has become a question of particular relevance in the context of political reform. The purpose of the article is to analyze the specific historical preconditions and reasons for the using of a mixed majoritarian-proportional system for elections to the Verkhovna Rada of Ukraine in 2002, conditions and consequences of the application, the results of the parliamentary elections.  The following transition to proportional representation was prognosed. At first all new electoral bills suggested the proportional electoral system. This system was called to make it possible
in the new parliament to form a majority that will form the government and take full responsibility for the situation in the country, and to contribute to further political structuring of society in general, Verkhovna Rada of Ukraine in particular. But it wasn’t adopted after numerous efforts. The Law «About Elections of People’s Deputies of Ukraine» dated October 18, 2001 provided the mixed electoral system with equal majoritarian and proportional parts. Highlighted the new provisions the mixed electoral system applied in 2002 compared to the version used on the parliamentary elections in 1998. The participants of elections to the Verkhovna Rada of Ukraine in 2002 were 33 subjects: 21 politial parties and 12 blocs of parties. In majoritarian elections involved 3084 candidates for deputies. Protective barrier in proportional elections was set at 4 %. In parliament passed, breaking the barrier, 6 political forces. The results of the elections to the Verkhovna Rada of Ukraine in 2002 again proved the effectiveness of quantitative and qualitative mixed electoral system. Increased overall educational level of people’s deputies, substantially increased representation of scientists and representatives of such professions as lawyers and economists. The political structuring of the newly elected parliament was in that 10 fractions and 4 groups were formed. Only 17 people’s deputies were unaffiliated. It seemed the configuration of political forces in the Parliament of Ukraine didn’t allow the existence of a stable majority. However, the majority was created because of political agreements. While its activities have not sufficiently productive, but its existence enabled certain political experience and hope for its development to more advanced forms, improve the efficiency of the legislative activity of the parliament, improve its quality. The situation after the elections in 2002, on the one hand, showed the need for a proportional electoral system to ensure the implementation of the people’s political will, the elimination of unpredictability factor, which is the majoritarian electoral system. And the immediate results of the parliamentary elections confirmed the positive impact of the proportional system, even in combination with majoritarian, on the development of structuring political parties and parliament. On the other hand, the parties have demonstrated underdevelopment and influence, especially in deciding the future of the electoral system, as discussed in detail in this article, as well as organizational and structural imperfections, particularly in the stage of formation of election commissions.