However, PDL’s decision to nominate a presidential candidate is boycotting the initiative of coagulating all right-wing forces.
Three Democrat-Liberals have so far signed up for their party’s internal race for the nomination of its candidate for the presidential elections of 2014.
The first candidate is First Vice-President Catalin Predoiu who stated on Friday that he is starting “a competition with the thought of winning” and that if he does not win the nomination he will give up coordinating the shadow government. “It’s a candidacy I am fighting for, it’s not a candidacy someone offered on the platter,” Predoiu stated, pointing out that he wants to offer a new vision for Romania, “one that includes a new way of making politics.” According to PDL sources quoted by ‘Evenimentul Zilei,’ the internal campaign will be an opportunity for Predoiu to make himself known outside of Bucharest, including among PDL members, considering that Predoiu joined PDL just three months ago. According to the same sources, an important reason that determined PDL President Vasile Blaga to bank on the Predoiu option is also the fact that he will be able to finance his campaign on his own, with a budget of EUR 5 M.
Arad Mayor Gheorghe Falca (PDL) announced on Friday that he enters the party’s internal competition for the nomination of a presidential candidate, stating that by doing this he wants to promote the project of unifying the Romanian right-wing and to initiate a debate on this subject. “I’ve decided to take part in the internal competition because I am a man with profound right-wing beliefs and I am interested in proposing projects that would stir debate on the big current issues: the project of unifying right-wing forces, which will in fact produce the presidential candidate; the positioning and doctrinaire clarification of the Romanian right-wing and a new project for Romania, in view of the year 2020,” Falca stated in a press release quoted by Mediafax.
The third candidate for the position of PDL’s presidential candidate is a woman; however she is not Elena Udrea as expected but Simona Cretu, PDL advisor within Bucharest’s General Council. She stated that she has projects and programs she has been working on for a long time and that she wants to implement. Asked what her chances of being designated PDL’s candidate are, Cretu answered: “I’m trying to think positively.”
In what concerns Elena Udrea, she said that she will not enter PDL’s internal competition and pointed out that if “she were to lead PDL today the right-wing would be unified and would have a single candidate.” “We should have unified all center-right parties into a big party capable of winning around 25 per cent in the EP elections and to support, with real chances, a right-wing candidate,” Udrea believes.
The idea of merging all right-wing forces remains viable, however it is seen differently by the representatives of the parties involved. PDL has accepted the idea of such a merger, however it wants the merger to take place around itself and its presidential candidate. Right at the end of last week, PDL President Vasile Blaga reiterated that his party is open to coagulating the other center-right and right-wing formations around it, but that their representatives could run on PDL’s lists for the EP elections only if those parties would merge by absorption within PDL. He also mentioned the possibility that, after the parliamentary elections, a sole right-wing candidate will be nominated for the presidential elections.
It remains to be seen whether the other parties expected to be part of this coagulation of right-wing forces will agree with everything gravitating around PDL. The Civic Force (FC), the party led by Mihai Razvan Ungureanu, who has in fact announced his presidential candidacy, could accept this merger, but not through absorption, as Ungureanu warned. Moreover, Ungureanu seems willing to give up his presidential candidacy only if the PDL candidate will be better positioned in the polls. Ungureanu in fact said that he watches with interest the competition within PDL and its results, because he wants to know “who he will be paired up with,” considering that Ungureanu raised the issue of a duo consisting of him and Predoiu. For the time being the Civic Force plans a merger with the Romanian Ecologist Party (PER). Talks are scheduled this week. The Civic Force is already in an alliance with Aurelian Pavelescu’s PNTCD.
PDL’s relations with the People’s Movement led by Eugen Tomac are even tenser, the two parties constantly attacking each other. Moreover, Tomac has announced that the People’s Movement will nominate its own presidential candidate, also at the end of an internal competition.