Antonescu vows to preserve USL until 2016

The PNL leader believes a solution to problems within USL could “materialize by bringing supplements to the internal regulation protocol.” The future President should offer guarantees, not peace of mind.

At the start of this year’s first meeting of Liberal leaders held yesterday, PNL leader Crin Antonescu said he “strongly” believes there is an obligation to attempt to reinvigorate and help USL carry out its term, despite everything that took place late last year.
“I feel the statements made by some alliance colleagues and politicians who are already setting the date when it would be best to break USL, statements about arguments in one corner of the country or another, differences of opinion, conflicts, and frustrations which accumulated last year within this alliance, are irresponsible. I’m not saying they are not real; we know they are. We know full well that behind everything that was incautiously and irresponsibly, even, in my opinion, last year, there are many other which we knew we should keep a lid on,” Antonescu stated, as cited by Mediafax. The PNL leader went on to say the Liberals may well have “real reasons” to consider “terminating this contract” regarding USL at some point in the future, but whereas politicians can do this, the voters cannot, because they do not have the means to determine a political decision between elections. “Here’s why I think (…) it is our responsibility and imperative not to think about if, when, and how USL should be broken, but instead about how to ultimately honour the commitment we have undertaken,” the Liberal said. He stated the Union should fulfill the obligations it undertook when it was founded and use its prerogatives to carry out the term, “A term that can survive the MEP and presidential elections, and involves governing and maintaining parliamentary majority until end-2016, when the next parliamentary elections are due.”

A solution to problems within USL could “materialize by bringing supplements to the internal regulation protocol or by adding mechanisms aimed at regulating the internal regulation protocol at central and local levels,” the PNL leader stated further. He added that 2014 has “every chance” of being the toughest, yet most fruitful year in PNL’s post-1990 political history.
The goal of the future President should not be “not to offend” or “to offer peace of mind”
According to Antonescu, the goal of the future President of Romania should not be “not to offend” anyone or “to offer peace of mind,” but to ensure democratic stability and the upholding of the Constitution. “The President should offer guarantees, not peace of mind. Of course, guarantees should be firm and should refer to upholding the Constitution, maintaining democratic balance, and ensuring a fair interaction between and operation of all public institutions; only then can we talk about peace of mind. (…) However, the President should be a guarantor,” the PNL leader emphasized.
He continued by saying the image of such a president is what USL committed to, “We want a president who brings unity and unification, but before the unification with Bessarabia, he must bring unity to Romania.”
According to Antonescu, PNL has a voters’ rating of 25 per cent, and this year’s objectives are concerned with the rule of law and promoting legislative measures fit to ensure the independence of the judicial system. “So long as PNL is part of the government and has parliamentary majority, the party assumes and undertakes the role of guarantor of the democratic regime, the rule of law, and the separation of state powers,” he said further. In this respect, Crin Antonescu continued, many aspects need to be “made right” or modified, “We have an obligation to think at a legislative level. (…) What can we do to ensure the independence of judicial institutions and their proper operation beyond partisanship and political influence?” The PNL leader noted the Liberals will not abandon their government responsibilities, as long as they are part of a Government that “acts in accordance with the governance agenda.”
At the conclusion of the meeting held yesterday, Antonescu announced that he received a mandate, together with other colleagues, to discuss with USL partners on the operating “mechanisms and procedures” of the alliance, mentioning that it will not be a renegotiation, but possibly a completion of the protocol.
In a different move, answering a question, the PNL leader mentioned that he does not rule out the possibility of supporting a referendum on revising the Constitution simultaneously with the presidential elections of this year, in the conditions of a legal quorum of 50 pc.
Antonescu added that PNL should have the “maturity” to participate with its own lists in the European elections of this year, while also maintaining the USL, but he does not oppose another formula that could be discussed.
Liberals want joint lists with PSD for EP
Radu Stroe, Internal Affairs Minister and Deputy Chairman of PNL, stated yesterday that he supports the idea of joint lists between PNL and PSD for the European Parliament elections “for very many reasons.” Prior to this statement, sources within PNL cited by claimed the idea was also supported by Deputy Prime Minister Daniel Chitoiu.
Senator Calin Popescu Tariceanu also stated yesterday that joint lists between PNL and PSD for the European Parliamentary elections would be more useful to maintaining cohesion within USL than a separate candidacy.
“Separate lists would be dangerous because they could lead to inherent competition between the two parties, and given the dissension we have all witnessed recently, the situation could deteriorate,” Tariceanu noted.
“If you want a general piece of wisdom, it may be best to run with joint lists,” the PNL senator added. Tariceanu went on to say, on the other hand, PNL needs to score some points in the right-wing ideological unity department.

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