What can be, for a teacher, more important, more uplifting, than to see how his former "disciples" in the noble profession of teaching, "produce" periodically valuable works that enrich the literature.
This time, the associate professor Mihai Cristian Apostolache also gives us a fruit of his diligence, a comment of Law no. 1152015 on local elections. After commenting, in two editions, on the former law of local public administration, which could complete his "more" concerns than a comment on the law on local elections.
Elections, in general, regardless of the level they target, are the most important political event in a state. Conducted periodically, it helps political competitors to send their representatives to public authorities at the central or local level, and to voters, to transfer their exercise of sovereignty to them.
Maybe that's why rights have such a tumultuous history in general, and in terms of differentiating between the right to vote for men and women in particular.
National sovereignty, according to art. 2 of the Constitution, belongs to the Romanian people, who exercise it through a referendum and through its representative bodies, constituted by free, periodic and fair elections.
The specification of the character of the elections was introduced by the Revision Law of 2003 and was determined by the desire of the constituent legislator derived to separate between the totalitarian state and the rule of law, at the building of which we passed after the Revolution of December 1989.
In the past regime there were also elections, but the only resemblance to those of today was that the elections were and are periodic, because of the free and fair character it is obvious that it could not be.
The election of the local public administration authorities went through, in terms of regulation, three major stages, determined by reference to the Fundamental Law of the country:
a) the pre-constitutional stage, represented by Law no. 701991 of the local elections, which was amended by Law no. 251996, so that, after this date, we can say that it has changed its character;
b) the post-constitutional stage before the revision, represented by Law no. 251996, which, as we have shown, amended the first Law of local elections no. 701991;
c) the post-revision stage of the Constitution, represented by Law no. 672004 regarding the election of the local public administration authorities, Law no. 352008, which, although regulating the election of the Chambers of the Parliament, modifies and completes, at the same time, both Law no. 2152001 of the local public administration, as well as Law no. 3932004 on the Statute of local elected officials.
The third law, from the same category, is the current Law no. 1152015, whose commentary is the subject of this paper.
We find that there has been a fluctuation of legislation, an instability of it, which has led some authors to criticize this, appreciating that, for the fairness of the election, it is inherent to have a well-established, clear and coherent legislation that does not be subject to such frequent changes. It is underlined that the regulation of the process of electing the local public administration authorities “has been modified quite often and especially, by emergency ordinances, in the electoral years. All these situations were a factor of legal uncertainty and a cause of the deficiencies of this legislation, found on the occasion of its application ".
In any case, these changes are not allowed to take place in the year preceding, as the Constitutional Court has ruled, the electoral cycles. Unfortunately, such demands have often remained at the level of aspirations, because the reality is very different, because we meet an effervescence of both the primary legislator and the derivative, in amending the electoral law "as it beats the wind” of political interests.
It is enough to exemplify the election of the mayor, an institution that was the subject of research on the author's doctoral thesis, which initially took place in two rounds, with rare exceptions in which in the first round wins over 50% one of the candidates. Subsequently, the law was amended, promoting the uninominal majority voting system in a single round, being declared elected the candidate who won in the first round, the highest number of votes.
It is interesting that the same political competitors, who promoted the system of a single round, later, when they were in other roles or in other positions, campaigned for the return to the election in two rounds. Moreover, they wanted this to happen a few months before the election date, in violation of the rule enshrined in the "supreme guardian" of constitutionality and the rule of law at European level, which is the Venice Commission for Democracy through Law.
May God also understand the political class and its representatives. We are pleased to mention that Mihai Apostolache, the author of this paper, was among those who campaigned not to enshrine undemocratic legislative solutions and who vehemently criticized them when they were, however, adopted. Mihai Apostolache is characterized by other authors from several points of view. First, because he is not only a theorist, he exercised several mandates as a parliamentarian, so he was also the "author" of the laws, not just the one who applies them, obeys them or analyzes them. Secondly, Mihai Apostolache is deeply attached to the local public administration, which he served from several hypotheses. First, through a non-governmental organization that organized various training courses for local elected officials and local public administration staff. This non-governmental body was later transformed into a local political party, which already enjoys a legitimate trust and recognition. From this perspective, the comment made by Mr. Mihai Apostolache on Law no. 1152015 combines the foundations of the theorist with the skills and experience of the practitioner. This gives it a value, which we are convinced will be discovered and appreciated by all those who study and use this work in their work.
Prof. univ. Dr. VERGINIA VEDINAS