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July 27, 2021

Seven Liberal MPs resign to join Tariceanu’s party

Tariceanu: “I am starting procedures for the party, I am collecting signatures for my presidential candidacy.”

The PNL Congress has barely ended that the dissatisfied have already started to surface. Thus, six Lower Chamber MPs, including Andrei Gerea, have announced their resignations from PNL yesterday and their decision to join the party that the former Liberal Premier and party president Calin Popescu Tariceanu will set up.
The six MPs are: Andrei Gerea, Nicu Marcu, Viorel Teodorescu, Sorin Teju, Viorel Palasca and Nicolae Alexandri. Likewise, Bogdan Nica, PNL’s former regional secretary for the South-Muntenia region, also announced he will leave the party. The PNL MPs’ main reason of dissatisfaction has to do with the merger with PDL and with the way the party congress meeting took place. “I decided to resign from PNL after over 24 years because the party I joined ceased to exist after yesterday’s congress meeting. The National Liberal Party as we all know it is no longer, because the merger with PDL was decided. (…) It merges with the party that held Romanians and Romania in contempt, with the party that trampled the values of democracy, state institutions and in the end the vote of 7.4 million Romanians,” MP Andrei Gerea stated. He pointed out that he will join the party that Tariceanu will set up and he will back Tariceanu’s presidential candidacy.
Next to the six MPs comes MP Gratiela Gavrilescu who announced the day before that she too will resign from PNL, complaining that at the Congress meeting “the vote took place as arranged and notes circulated,” adding that she will join the Liberal party that Tariceanu will set up. “It was already known that Johannis will be party president, it was known who the vice presidents will be, the notes circulated, the vote took place as arranged and not based on the conscience of many of the delegates. The vote fixing worked,” Gratiela Gavrilescu, elected PNL MP in an electoral college in Prahova and now on her second term in Parliament, stated. She said that she is leaving PNL because even if the party’s name is maintained after the merger with PDL the new party “will no longer be the same and will no longer have the same principles,” and in these conditions she will no longer find her place in it.
George Scutaru, the leader of PNL MPs within the Lower Chamber, commented on some MPs’ decision to leave the party by saying that this is “a moment of clarification” and that at this moment Calin Popescu Tariceanu “is in fact trying to save his office of Senate Speaker.” “Tariceanu has to first of all justify his presence in the office of Senate Speaker, it’s well-known that his coalition partners have recently been dissatisfied with the slow pace at which the project of Tariceanu’s new party is being implemented,” Scutaru said. He pointed out that he has noticed lately that at the level of PNL’s parliamentary group there are approximately eight or nine MPs that constantly vote alongside the government, ignoring the vote that the PNL group had. “I believe this is a moment of clarification, you cannot be a PNL member and at the same time expect handouts from the Ponta Government, you cannot be a member of PNL in the morning and in the evening visit Tariceanu and say you are a member of his party.”
Former National Liberal Party (PNL) President and Prime Minister Calin Popescu-Tariceanu has announced in a message sent to the Liberals on Friday that the Initiative Group for the Preservation of the Liberal Identity will “immediately” initiate all the procedures for setting up a new Liberal party and the collection of signatures for him to run for President of Romania in the November elections. According to him, the Liberal leaders had thus sought to eliminate his candidacy, to avoid a genuine debate and competition and hold a merely formal congress, by means of which “they were meant to preserve their leading positions and impose on the party a bankrupt political direction prompted by personal interests that do not answer the party’s interests.” He, moreover, predicts that the PNL will soon share the fate of another historical party that has not made it to the Parliament for a long time – the Christian Democratic National Peasant Party (PNTCD).

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