Elections to the European Parliament in Latvia were held on 25 May 2019 where eight members of parliament were elected to the European Parliament from Latvia. Latvia was a single constituency in these elections.
There were 1,000 polling stations opened for the European Parliament elections, of which 44 polling stations were set up in 38 foreign states for the first time in the EP elections, as well as two special polling stations – a polling station for detention sites of the Riga City and a polling station for postal voting.
474,390 voters or 33.5 per cent participated in the European Parliament elections, among them 2,955 Latvian citizens voted abroad that is 91.3 per cent of all voters registered for voting abroad. In comparison with the European Parliament elections of 2014, voter turnout increased by 3.3 percentage points. There were 445,225 or 30.2 per cent of voters participated in the 2014 EP elections.
16 lists of candidates from political parties and alliances of political parties were registered for the elections to the European Parliament. These lists included 246 candidates in total that was 76 candidates more than in previous elections in 2014. Thus, there was 31 candidate for each of the eight seats from Latvia in the European Parliament.
Five lists of candidates gained seats in the European Parliament: “The New UNITY” (“Jaunā VIENOTĪBA”) received 124,193 votes or 26,24% and two seats, the Social Democratic Party "Harmony" ("Saskaņa" sociāldemokrātiskā partija) – 82,604 votes or 17,45% and two seats, the National Alliance "All For Latvia!"-"For Fatherland and Freedom/LNNK" (Nacionālā apvienība "Visu Latvijai!"-"Tēvzemei un Brīvībai/LNNK") – 77,591 votes or 16,4% and two seats, For Development/For! (Attīstībai/Par!) – 58,763 votes or 12,42% and one seat, the Latvian Russian Union (“Latvijas Krievu savienība”) – 29,546 votes or 6,24% and one seat.
The Members of the European Parliament elected from Latvia are: Valdis Dombrovskis and Sandra Kalniete from “The New UNITY”, Nils Ušakovs and Andris Ameriks from the Social Democratic Party "Harmony", Roberts Zīle un Dace Melbārde from the National Alliance "All For Latvia!"-"For Fatherland and Freedom/LNNK", Ivars Ijabs from For Development/For! and Tatjana Ždanoka from the Latvian Russian Union.
There were 473,260 valid ballot envelopes and 470,460 valid ballot papers received in the elections.
387,175 or 82.3% of all ballot papers were changed, i.e. such ballot papers where voters have placed at once one „+” mark next to the name of a candidate or struck out any of candidates. The number of changed ballot papers was approximately the same as in the EP elections of 2014 when 83.3% of all ballot papers were received with voters’ marks.
The number of ballot envelopes without valid ballot papers was 2,801 or 0.6% from the total number of valid envelopes. This number consists of empty ballot envelopes, ballot envelopes with different ballot papers, torn ballot papers or ballot papers from another constituency.
Citizens of Latvia and citizens of other European Union member states residing in Latvia and entered into the Population Register of Latvia and the Electoral Register of Latvia had the right to elect the European Parliament. To participate in elections a voter on Election Day had to be at least 18 years old.
Previously prepared voters lists were used to register voters in the elections to the European Parliament. Each voter was registered for elections at a certain polling station where he/she could vote on Election Day. Initially voters were registered at a polling station in accordance with their declared place of residence, but they could change the polling station from 16 March till 9 May 2019 (the 18th day before Election Day). It was possible to make registration for voting at another polling station by two ways:
- online – through the e-service for change of the polling stations;
- in person – submitting the application to the relevant municipal authority.
Latvian citizens were automatically included in the Electoral Register, but citizens of other EU member states staying in Latvia and wishing to use their electoral right in Latvia had to apply for registration with the Central Election Commission till 25 April 2019 (the 30th day before Election Day).
The Law on Elections to the European Parliament provides for various options how voters can participate in elections to the European Parliament. The options were as below:
- to vote at their polling station on Election Day from 7.00 to 20.00;
- to vote early, when the polling stations will be open for several hours a day on 22 May from 17:00 till 20:00, on 23 May from 9:00 till 12:00 or on 24 May from 10:00 till 20:00;
- to vote at the place of their location if voters were unable to come to the polling station for health reasons, voters were caregivers of ill persons or were imprisoned;
- to vote abroad by post or at polling stations opened abroad.
At the same time, citizens of Latvia eligible to vote and residing in any of the EU member states could elect the European Parliament by casting their vote for one of the candidate lists submitted in the respective country. In this case the voter had to choose, candidates of which country he/she wants to elect. If a voter chose to vote for candidates from the country of residence, such voter lost the right to vote for Latvian candidates.
To participate in the elections voters needed to have an identity document - a passport or identity card.
Candidate lists for elections to the European Parliament could be submitted from the eightieth to the sixty fifth day before Election Day. The submission of candidate lists for the EP elections of 2019 was held from the 6 till 21 March. Candidates’ lists were submitted to and registered with the Central Election Commission.
Political parties and alliances of political parties registered in Latvia and consisted of at least 500 members had the right submit a list of candidates for the European Parliament election.
Citizens of Latvia, as well as citizens of other EU countries residing in Latvia had the right to stand as a candidate in elections to the European Parliament in Latvia. All candidates on Election Day had to reach the age of 21 years and they had not to be subject to restrictions established by the Law on Elections to the European Parliament.
Each party or alliance of political parties intending to participate in elections to the European Parliament could include up to sixteen candidates to the list of candidates – twice as many as the number of members of parliament had to be elected to the European Parliament from Latvia.
The European Parliament elections in Latvia were organised by election commissions of three levels – the Central Election Commission, 119 regional election commissions and about a thousand polling station election commissions.
The Electoral Register in Latvia was compiled and maintained by the Office of Citizenship and Migration Affairs, which was the main institution responsible also for the compiling of voter lists for polling stations and the e-service for changing of the initially prescribed polling station.
The Corruption Prevention and Combating Bureau, the National Electronic Mass Media Council and during the elections – the State Police and the Municipal Police oversaw the election campaign.
Elections to the European Parliament were funded by the state budget.