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February 4, 2023

President says likes Sarkozy, Bush and that Putin is ‘cool’

President Traian Basescu said on Sunday evening during the political satire TV show Divertis that French President Nicolas Sarkozy and ex US President George W. Bush are among the politicians he most appreciates. When asked about Russian Prime Minister Vladimir Putin, the Romanian president said he was “a cool man”. Basescu also said that Bush offered a lot of support to Romania’s accession to NATO and its efforts to define its role in the alliance. As for Sarkozy, Basescu said the French president was “his type”.

During the show, the president touched on an array of topics, including the upcoming presidential poll and two of his rivals in the race, Social-Democrat leader Mircea Geoana and independent candidate Sorin Oprescu, who is currently mayor of Bucharest. Basescu also said he can be a romantic in privacy, like “Leonardo DiCaprio in ‘Titanic’.”

When asked to comment on Oprescu’s campaign promise when he ran for mayor that he would build a suspended highway, Basescu replied that “anyone can have wet dreams” and started laughing. As for Geoana, Basescu said that if he and the PSD leader will get in the presidential runoff, he will tell Geoana that he is no longer a communist. Basescu referred to the 2004 presidential poll, when he ran against then-Social-Democrat leader Adrian Nastase. During a live debate with Nastase, Basescu said Romania had the misfortune of having to choose between two former communists: himself and Nastase. The president said that if he finds himself facing Geoana in the runoff, he will tell the PSD leader that he knows for sure that he is no longer a communist. Smiling, the president added that Geoana would certainly not know what to answer to this statement.“

I’ll look after my mother”

Also on Sunday, President Basescu told reporters inquiring about his mother’s health condition that he looks after her and that she was currently at his house. The comment came as official sources quoted by Mediafax had said earlier that the president’s mother was hospitalized at the Bucharest Oncology Institute.

Elena Basescu, 80, was reportedly admitted a few days ago, the sources said. The president’s mother lives in Constanta and whenever Basescu reaches the area, he goes to visit her.

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