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The current 128 seats in Parliament are up 29 on the pre-Taif Accord era but with elections looming, much talk has revolved around moving specific seats from one voting district to another.With Maronites currently holding the largest share of Parliament seats, with 34 MPs, the root of the back and forth discussions have focused on how the two biggest Christian political parties – the Lebanese Forces and the Free Patriotic Movement – can expand their control in Parliament.SEAT SHIFTINGIf this proposal goes through, it would take the only Maronite seat away from the roughly 29,000 registered Christian voters in the West Bekaa, leaving them with a single Orthodox Christian MP to represent them.If a Maronite seat is taken from the West Bekaa, its local Christians could legitimately ask why it should not be replaced with the Catholic seat from Baalbeck.In the 2009 Parliamentary election, West Bekaa MP Robert Ghanem won the seat with 35,329 votes. DOWNSIZE PARLIAMENT Prior to the Taif, there were 99 seats in Parliament – 54 Christian MPs and 45 Muslim MPs.Then, the Syrian government added 20 MPs – 10 Christian for areas where the sect had little to no say in the outcome – during their 15-year occupation of the country that ended in 2005 .
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