Record Modified: Dec 06 2023

Dec. 17, 2023 Confirmed


Republic of Chile


More Info:

At Stake in this Election: 

On 17 December 2023, Chile will hold a referendum on whether to replace the current constitution—introduced in 1980 during the Pinochet regime—with a new one drafted by the Expert Commission and Constitutional Council of 2023. The proposed constitution maintains some stances, such as emphasizing the role of both the state and the free market, while introducing changes such as adding an explicit right to sufficient housing, broadening the legal definition of a child to include fetuses and fast-tracking the deportation of unauthorized migrants. The proposed constitution would also introduce institutional changes such as removing 17 seats from the Chamber of Deputies, setting a 5% minimum threshold for parties to gain legislative seats, and requiring members of Congress to resign if they switch party affiliations. Voting in referenda is mandatory.

The referendum question is: Are you for or against the text of the New Constitution?  

Response options are “For” or “Against” 

Government Structure:  

  • Chief of State: President Gabriel BORIC (since 11 March 2022) 

  • Head of Government: President Gabriel BORIC (since 11 March 2022) 

  • Assembly: bicameral National Congress (Congreso Nacional) with a 50-seat Senate (Senado) and a 155-seat Chamber of Deputies (Cámara de Diputados) 

Electoral System:  

  • The President is directly elected by absolute majority vote in up to two rounds and may serve one 4-year term. 

  • In the Senate, all 50 members are directly elected via open party-list proportional representation vote from multi-seat constituencies. Members serve 8-year terms, and one half of seats are up for election every four years. 

  • In the Chamber of Deputies, all 155 members are directly elected via open party-list proportional representation vote from multi-seat constituencies. All members serve 4-year terms. 

Last Referendum: 

In a 2022 referendum, Chileans rejected a new constitution developed by the directly elected Constitutional Convention with 61.86% of voters voting against the draft. Voter turnout was 86%. 

Key Deadlines: 

Information for Voters: 

Population and Registered Voters: 

Gender Data: 

Disability Data: 

  • CRPD Status: Signed 2007, Ratified 2008 

  • Projected population with a disability: 3,136,597 (2022 est.) 

IFES Resources: 

  • Does IFES have a presence in Chile: No 

  • Election Access: Yes 

  • Election Judgements: Yes, 4 judgments and 10 resources  

Referendum Text in Spanish 

Question: "¿Está usted a favor o en contra del texto de Nueva Constitución?" 

Responses: “A favor” (For) or “En contra” (Against)