Chilean parliamentary elections of 2021
November 30, 2021
The 2021 Chilean parliamentary elections take place on November 21, 2021. They aim at the simultaneous renewal of the two chambers of the National Congress, the Chilean parliament. The first round of the presidential election as well as regional elections are organized on the same day.
The November 2017 elections result in a parliament without a majority. The Chile Allons alliance, a coalition of center-right and right-wing opposition parties, won a relative majority of seats in both chambers. The center-left New Majority coalition of outgoing president Michelle Bachelet comes second, followed by the left-wing coalition of the Broad Front, which surprised with a higher-than-expected result.
The country is experiencing massive protests in 2019 and 2020 to challenge an economic system deemed very unequal. Thirty demonstrators are killed and thousands injured or arrested. The Constitution then in force quickly concentrated criticism because of its strongly unequal neoliberal content as well as its origins, this one having been drafted in 1980 under the military dictatorship of Augusto Pinochet, although it has since been amended several times. in particular to put an end to the presence of senator for life ,. It establishes an economic model based on the privatization of a large part of public goods, including education, health, pensions and access to water. Faced with the scale of the popular protest movement, the leaders of the majority of Chilean parties signed the "Agreement for social peace and the new Constitution" on November 15, 2019. This provides for the amendment of several articles of chapter XV of the Constitution allowing the drafting of a new fundamental text via the convening of a constituent assembly, a procedure that the Constitution of 1980 did not allow previously.
The presidential election is thus preceded by the election of a constituent assembly on May 15 and 16, 2021 following the referendum organized on October 25, 2020 where the voters voted for a change of Constitution as well as on the principle of a constituent assembly responsible for drafting the new fundamental law.
The National Congress is made up of a lower chamber, the Chamber of Deputies, and an upper chamber, the Senate. Both are renewed every four years, the Chamber of Deputies is renewed entirely, while the Senate is renewed only half.
The Chamber of Deputies of Chile is made up of 155 seats filled for four years by plurinominal proportional representation in 28 constituencies of three to eight seats, distributed after counting of the votes according to the d'Hondt method, without electoral threshold.
The Senate of Chile is made up of 50 senators elected for eight years and renewable by half by multi-member proportional system in 15 constituencies of two to five senators corresponding in part to the regions of Chile, according to the same method. This is the second senatorial elections since a recent reform aimed at reducing the total number of senators from 38 to 50, the previous ones in 2017 having allowed a first enlargement to 43 senators. As a result, 27 senators are elected in the 2021 elections, with approximately half of the renewal still taking place.
Chamber of Deputies
Notes and references
Political life in Chile
Policy Portal Chile Portal 2020s Portal