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Both PDL and PNL leaderships approved yesterday the beginning of talks for an alliance. Discussions were scheduled for Wednesday evening, after the closing of this newspaper edition. PDL president Vasile Blaga said after the session of the Permanent Bureau, mentioning that the idea is to form a grand center-right party, finally.
“We participate in this discussion with open mind. We want to collaborate on short, medium and long term. So, we will not envisage only the presidential elections of this year, but also the local and parliamentary elections of 2016,” Vasile Blaga added. In his turn, PNL resigning president Crin Antonescu said after the party’s Standing Delegation that Liberals decided to accept PDL’s invitation to start political talks for partnership.
Asked about the fact that his party repeatedly claimed that it will not negotiate with a PNL led by Crin Antonescu, Blaga answered that in time “he learned many from what happened these last years.” Asked about the candidate in the presidential elections, the democrat–liberal leader said that PDL now has a very strong candidate, the former Justice Minister Catalin Predoiu, together with the liberals they will establish the criteria for having a sole candidate and he would rejoice if this was the representative of PDL. On the other hand, sources quoted by the “Evenimentul zilei” newspaper said that PDL would be willing to renounce Predoiu and support Antonescu or Johannis in the presidential elections.
The intention to form a sole grand center-right party after the elections of 2016 was evoked by Blaga also Tuesday evening, on several televisions. On Realitatea TV, Blaga mentioned that the negotiations between PDL and PNL are “between equals” and the two parties will easily agree to a potential ruling programme for 2016. Commenting the fact that the president of PSD, Victor Ponta, wished the leaders of PDL, PNL and FC to succeed in the unification of the right, because it would be “a shame” not to do it, Blaga appreciated that the statement denotes that the premier already is worried about the discussions PNL-PDL.
As for coopting PMP in these talks, Blaga said that nobody from the People’s Movement got in touch with him, adding that “they have other things to do now, they are killing each other.”
Besides the uncertainty coming from the PMP camp, other right-wing parties manifested their intention of discussing the reunification of the right with PNL and PDL. The president of the Civic Force, Mihai Razvan Ungureanu said that his party will participate in these talks, warning that the only solution for the reunification of the right is renouncing self-pride. Yesterday, ex-premier Emil Boc, who seems close to PMP, although he is a member of PDL, said that the right must be wise enough to reach a sole candidate, set aside self-pride and “start discussions from principles, not persons,” which is the only way PSD can be defeated.
Antonescu: There is openness for merger
On the other hand, the resigning president of PNL, Crin Antonescu invoked the possibility of a merger with PDL, arguing Tuesday evening on Realitatea TV that the idea of alliances no longer offers enough credibility, so the liberals have lost their appetite for a new alliance. “We can discuss if this is possible, and this means a merger, it has its complications, its difficulties, but if it is possible to see what steps we can do, because indeed a big party, resulting from a merger, can be achieved,” Antonescu said, adding that the 15 pc obtained by his party plus the 12 pc of PDL give the minimal percentage for a big party.
According to Antonescu, the main preoccupation of PNL now is to avoid getting close to PSD, the former partners of the USL alliance. Antonescu mentioned that he will do whatever is legal or moral – including a possible candidacy at the Congress – so PNL does not return besides PSD “taken by Tariceanu or by someone like him,” because – Antonescu says – this would mean “the end of PNL.” The resigning leader added that PM Ponta is more dangerous for Romania than President Basescu and that he does not want to regret the acting head of state as he regretted Adrian Nastase, from certain points of view. Antonescu described Calin Popescu Tariceanu “as a walking dead, we are afraid by how much humiliation he can cause himself.”
Tariceanu: PNL to be swallowed by PDL, Basescu
Senate Chairman Calin Popescu Tariceanu has criticised recent talks about PNL getting close to PDL headed by Vasile Blaga. He claimed this to be an attempt to distract attention from PNL’ spoor result in the May 25 European elections. Asked whether he was still considering vying for a leadership position inside PNL, Tariceanu underscored that the current PNL leaders have an authoritarian leadership style and he does not want to be part of the team.
Tariceanu predicted on Tuesday evening at Digi24 that PNL will be swallowed by PDL, by president Basescu. “Traian Basescu will play an important part, he can’t wait to fulfill his long ago dream”, Tariceanu argued.
The involvement of Traian Basescu in a possible construction of the right after the presidential elections of this autumn is also invoked by the political analyst Bogdan Teodorescu, who said in an interview with “Jurnalul national” that the unification of the right will be made with the purpose of maintaining Basescu in power and propelling him to the position of prime minister. “The unification of the right will not be made for a president which becomes irrelevant, but for a prime minister, Traian Basescu (…) He will fight with all his weapons to stay in power after November” Teodorescu said.
INSCOP: Ponta – president, Isarescu – prime minister, the winning tandem
A virtual electoral tandem Victor Ponta president, Mugur Isarescu prime minister has won the most positive appreciations in a recent INSCOP poll, with 28.4 per cent of the respondents having opted for it. Second came in the tandem Victor Ponta president George Maior – prime minister (23.5 per cent). Other tandems were Victor Ponta – president, Mircea Geoana – prime minister (22.6 per cent), Crin Antonescu – president Klaus Johannis – prime-minister (20.5 per cent), Ponta – president, Liviu Dragnea – prime-minister (16 per cent); Crin Antonescu – president. The poll was commissioned by daily Adevarul and conducted by INSCOP Research, May 1-7, 2014.