The 255-member specially elected assembly, which opened last month and is scheduled to complete the new constitution by August 2007 so it can be put to a referendum, approved its internal rules and regulations by a simple majority on Thursday. Opposition members insist that voting should be by a two-thirds majority. The opposition claims that President Morales scrapped the two-thirds majority rule after it became apparent that his Movement Towards Socialism party had just 60 percent of the seats in the assembly.
Now that the assembly has approved a simple majority vote, Mr Morales will be able to push through reforms designed to redress Bolivia's socio-economic inequalities. His reforms include nationalising the oil and gas industries.