This year's FIA election has the highest ever candidate eligibility requirement in the federation's history. Now in a move to improve the FIA's election system some clubs have tabled rule changes to this year's General Assembly to dramatically cut the qualifying hurdle that a candidate must clear in order to enter the race. David Ward, a candidate in the 2013 FIA election, has warmly welcomed the proposed rule changes which "if passed will be long overdue action to reduce the FIA's democratic deficit".
To be eligible in the 2013 FIA election a candidate has to submit a list of Deputies, Vice Presidents and supporting clubs totalling 37. The new club proposals would reduce the list to four
running mates supported by three club - a total of seven.
Ward strongly supports the proposed changes but warns that "It is likely that the FIA leadership will try to block democratic reform". In a letter to FIA clubs he says that "they will propose referring them to the Statutes Review Commission and encourage the World Councils to oppose a vote at the General Assembly". This will be the third time that clubs have tried to reform the FIA's presidential election system. In 2007 a similar proposal was tabled by the AAA, the ANWB and the ADAC in support of "a more democratic and open election procedure".
Another attempt was lost by just one vote in 2008. Copies of the proposed statue amendments are available at: Ward goes on to say that "Governance reform rather than who will be the next FIA President is the major issue of the 2013 election… Rather than wait for more internal review the FIA membership now has the opportunity to vote for change". Calling on clubs to vote for the reform proposals he argues that If approved they will "reinvigorate the FIA's democratic system" making it "more accountable and fair".
In support of the proposed reforms Ward has prepared a briefing paper comparing the eligibility requirements used in recent FIA elections and which also provides a critique of the weaknesses of the federation's 2013 election system.