Limits on individuals wishing to run for office may only be based on objective and reasonable criteria, including residency.
- Every citizen had the right to be elected, subject only to reasonable restrictions
- The vote-counting process was transparent and observable
- Candidates and their representatives were able to observe polling and counting as means of protecting their right to be elected
- Vote counting and tabulation processes protected the right to be elected
- The law may regulate the exercise of the rights and opportunities referred to in the preceding paragraph [right to participate in government] only on the basis of age, nationality, residence, language, education, civil... capacity or sentencing by a competent court in criminal proceedings.
- State reports should indicate whether any groups, such as permanent residents, enjoy [the right to register] on a limited basis, for example, by having the right to vote in local elections or to hold office.
- In this regard, the Committee recalls its General Comment on article 25, according to which the exercise of the rights protected by article 25 may not be suspended or excluded except on grounds which are established by law and which are objective and reasonable. The Committee notes that article 68, part 6, of the Electoral Code, gives a right to electoral commissions to refuse registering a candidate when he or she submits data that does not “correspond to reality”, including biographic data and information on income and property.
- The Court accepts that stricter requirements may be imposed on the eligibility to stand for election to parliament, as distinguished from voting eligibility. Hence the Court would not preclude outright a five-year continuous residency requirement for potential parliamentary candidates. Arguably, this requirement may be deemed appropriate to enable such persons to acquire sufficient knowledge of the issues associated with the national parliament’s tasks.
- A residence requirement may be imposed; ii. Residence in this case means habitual residence. iii. a length of residence requirement may be imposed on nationals solely for local or regional elections; iv. the requisite period of residence should not exceed six months; a longer period may be required only to protect national minorities.
- Reasonable restrictions for persons wishing to become candidates must not unjustly discriminate, and may include a residency requirement in the country for a certain period of time before the elections...
- Reasonable restrictions on persons wishing to become candidates may include a residency requirement in the country for a certain period of time, minimum support among voters, or the fact of having reached a higher age than the minimum voting age.
- Often extra restrictions are introduced for being a candidate such as having had residence in the country for some period of time before the elections, or having residence in the constituency…. Such restrictions may well be acceptable.
- A residency requirement has been upheld by the European Commission on Human Rights, for a number of reasons: the assumption that a non-resident citizen is less directly involved or knowledgeable; the impracticability for candidates to present electoral issues to citizens abroad; the need to prevent electoral fraud, the risk of which is increased by postal voting; and finally, the link between representation and the obligation to pay taxes.
- The rationale for certain conditions such as age or residence is obvious: a sufficient level of maturity and connection to the community.
- Reasonable restrictions may include factors such as residence, citizenship, convicted persons in legal detention, and those considered mentally incapacitated by the courts.
- Reasonable restrictions [on voting] have included distinctions based on age, citizenship, residency...
- Reasonable restrictions may include factors such as residence, citizenship, current incarceration or having been convicted of a crime
- Residency requirements may discriminate against national minorities. Residence may operate in a discriminatory way against refugees or internally displaced persons. Internally displaced persons should be able to exercise their right to vote; where possible, refugees should enjoy some facility to vote.
- As with the right to vote, restrictions on the right to be elected must be confined to accepted criteria: age requirements, which may be somewhat higher than the legal voting age in the case of candidacies for high governmental office; citizenship requirements; reasonable residency requirements; and proportionate restrictions or disqualification in cases of findings of mental incapacity and criminal convictions.
- Particularly where the right to vote is extended to all citizens who are resident abroad, regardless of intention to return, it may be desirable to have stricter eligibility rules for candidates. This would usually take the form of a residence requirement.
- Voting rights should be based on considerations that include: citizenship; legal age of majority (this may differ from country to country); residency requirements; any other additional grounds for disqualification (eg, prisoners in detention, persons with a criminal record... and so on).
- [T]he following measure prescribed by law or regulations would not be considered discriminatory: measures establishing a reasonable period which must elapse before naturalized persons may exercise their political rights, provided that they are combined with a liberal naturalization policy.
- [T]he right to vote and to be elected may be accorded to citizens residing abroad.