Egypt’s Interim Ruler Meets with Election Committee

 It seems that Egypt’s interim ruler, Field Marshal Mohamed Hussein Tantawi, has put a full stop to the controversy over whether Egyptians should go for parliamentary elections first or produce a new constitution first.

 Tantawi yesterday met with the chairman and members of the Supreme Commission for Elections, while Tahrir Square is expecting large protests this Fri. (July 8) called for by key liberal and leftist groups that try to press Tantawi to put a new constitution before parliamentary polls.

 The meeting discussed the proposed amendments for the two laws of the People’s Assembly and Shura Council and pre-election measures.

 The Supreme Commission for Elections was formed a few days ago as an independent body. Its authority consists of judges selected according to their posts.

 Judicial supervision over elections has long been a key demand in Egypt before Mubarak was removed.

 A full judicial supervision over the 2005 legislative race resulted in the Egyptian opposition winning many seats in the Parliament in what was described as the largest representation for the opposition in 30 years.

 Judicial supervision was canceled in constitutional amendments introduced in 2007, stirring outcry across the country.

 This year’s parliamentary elections are set for Sept. The new Parliament will create a new committee to word a new constitution.

 By meeting with the Supreme Commission for Elections yesterday, Tantawi wanted to say: Controversy is over, parliamentary elections first…the constitution next, according to observers.

 Some analysts say “constitution first” advocates will accept the situation anyway, but may try to delay the elections a little bit.

 Muslim Brotherhood expect no delay on the date of legislative elections.