The Republic of El Salvador held a legislative election on Sunday, March 11, 2012. An overview of the electoral system of the Central American nation is presented here; El Salvador's party system will be reviewed in Part III of this presentation.
National- and departmental-level results are available here for the following legislative elections:
The election statistics presented in this space come from reports and data files issued by the Supreme Electoral Tribunal.
As set forth by the 1983 constitution, the Government of El Salvador is republican, democratic and representative.
The authority to legislate fundamentally belongs to the Legislative Assembly. The Assembly consists of a single chamber, composed of eighty-four deputies; these represent the whole nation, and are directly elected for a three-year term of office. Each one of El Salvador's fourteen departments is a constituency, and Assembly seats are allocated among departments in proportion to their population; nevertheless, no department may have fewer than three seats. Parties and coalitions may present lists of candidates; starting in 2012, independent or non-party candidates will also be able to participate in legislative elections. Until 2009, electors could only cast a ballot for a single list. However, in 2011 the Supreme Court of Justice of El Salvador ruled that closed lists were unconstitutional: as a result, in the 2012 legislative election voters will be able to choose a list, or one or more candidates in a single list, or one non-party candidate.
Legislative Assembly seats are distributed in each constituency according to an electoral quotient, obtained by dividing the total number of valid votes by the number of constituency seats. Then, the number of votes won by each party, coalition or non-party candidate is divided by the electoral quotient, and the result of this division, disregarding fractions, is is the initial number of deputies obtained by each party, coalition or non-party candidate. If there remain unallocated seats after the application of quotients, these are distributed according to the largest remainder method. Within each party or coalition, mandates are assigned to list candidates with the largest number of votes until all seats are filled.
Copyright © 2012 Manuel
Álvarez-Rivera. All Rights Reserved.