Sustaining the Presidential Threshold: The Constitutional Court’s Decision Violates the Constitution

Anthony Budiawan
Anthony Budiawan, Managing Director of PEPS (Political Economy and Policy Studies)

Article 6A paragraph (2) of the Constitution states, “The presidential and vice-presidential candidate pair are nominated by a political party or coalition of political parties participating in the general election before the implementation of the general election.” 

The article is crystal clear and allows no other possible interpretation. The Constitution does not state any threshold for the presidential nomination. It means that there should be no threshold for presidential candidacy. Therefore, the open legal policy regulating the presidential threshold is obviously against the Constitution. 

Second, the House of Representatives does not have any constitutional rights and authority to change (the content of) the Constitution, especially through a law intended as an open legal policy, because the laws made by the House are hierarchically under the Constitution and cannot rectify the Constitution. 

Read: Disapointment in Central Bank Policy is Baseless

In addition, and most importantly, the highest state institution with the constitutional authority to change (the meaning of) the Constitution is the People’s Consultative Assembly, which consists of the House of Representatives and the Regional Representative Board. Again, it means that the House of Representatives has no constitutional authority to change the Constitution through an open legal policy. 

By recognizing that the open legal policy related to the presidential threshold is valid according to the Constitution, the Constitutional Court has confiscated the power and illegally robbed the constitutional rights and powers of the Regional Representative Board, which is a part of the People’s Consultative Assembly. This is definitely against the law. Thus, the Constitutional Court judges deserve to be dismissed, and should be fully responsible for this unlawful act. (Anthony Budiawan)