Some offers are made to be rejected. That seems to have been the case for the constitution reform proposal presented by the Re-Solution group, which recently fell on its first reading in parliament.
There was, despite Re-Solution’s protests to the contrary, never much doubt about the chances of its passing. The wide-ranging constitutional draft would have, among other things, entirely abolished the Senate — thus instantly making it a non-starter with the senators that would have had to approve it. It was with little surprise, therefore, that the proposal shared the same fate as the various constitutional reform bills that preceded it.
Indeed, the fact that heated calls for political reform over the past two years has produced only the most miserably inadequate of results — a change in electoral systems — demonstrates the intense difficulty of amending the 2017 constitution. It almost seems futile even to discuss constitutional change any further, after so much ink has been spilled on this topic and so little has been seen in results. With an implacably opposed upper house and a government that barely even pretends to pay lip service to the program of constitutional reform it committed itself to on paper, is there even a point in caring?
Not so fast! Another group wants one more go. The recent charter buzz comes from Somchai Srisutthiyakorn, a former election commissioner who is now a member of the Seri Ruam Thai Party. Along with representatives from a number of political parties, activists and academics, Somchai is planning to collect signatures to push yet another constitutional draft to parliament.