POLITICS

Statements made by top politicians; from hopes to rebukes

Yesterday, on the day of the presidential elections vote, the candidates timed their arrival at voting centers so as to have their presence there reflected in the press as best as possible and both they and the politicians that back them outdid themselves in making statements about the importance of voting and about changing Romania for the better.
Traian Basescu: ‘They have 14 options and it’s clear that none of them looks like me’
Incumbent president Traian Basescu said it is ‘of utmost’ importance that the Romanians cast their vote this Sunday, highlighting it’s a moment when they should decide the kind of chief of state they wish. ‘It is of utmost importance that the Romanians cast their vote today, all of them if possible, the 18,300,000 citizens with a right to vote because as I said it is a moment when the Romanians should decide the type of President they want. Some liked it the way I ran my mandate, some didn’t. They have 14 options and it’s clear that none of them looks like me. They should opt for another kind of president and it is important to cast their vote,’ Traian Basescu said, after voting at ‘A.D. Xenopol’ high-school, alongside his wife, Maria.
He also said that is the time for changing a certain manner of being president of Romania and stressed that after ten years, another type of head of state will come. ‘Firstly, it is clear to me that it is the time of changing a certain manner of being president. After ten years another type of president will come, the matter is that it should be a president who should continue enhancing the rule of law and making Romania beautiful’, Basescu said.
Presidential candidate Ponta: ‘Let us begin building after 10 years of war, destruction’
Prime Minister Victor Ponta, running for president of Romania in Sunday’s polls under the banner of the Alliance of the Social Democrats, the National Union for the Progress of Romania and the Conservatives (PSD-UNPR-PC), said early in the day he had voted because ‘after ten years of war and destruction’, the time of reconstruction has come. ‘I am absolutely convinced and I am very optimistic that 25 years since we have gained a freedom that we very much and very many of us wanted – I was only 17 at the time…- we can end a transition that seemed to never end. I think in this winter we will be a genuinely democratic country, a European country and that, after ten years of war and destruction we can get down to building. And we will build in Bucharest, and in Transylvania and in Moldavia too and for the Romanians outside the borders because, I repeat, after so much war and destruction it is high time we re-built’, Ponta said on leaving the polling station.
The prime minister was accompanied by his wife, MEP Daciana Sarbu.
Iohannis: ‘I’m very optimistic, it’s a very special day’
The presidential candidate of the Christian Liberal Alliance (ACL), Klaus Iohannis said on Sunday after casting his ballot at polling station no. 68 in Sibiu, alongside his wife Carmen, that he’s very optimistic about the outcome of the Sunday polls. ‘It’s a very beautiful day, I was told that the voter turnout, at least in my polling station, is very good. I’m very optimistic’, Klaus Iohannis said.
Macovei: ‘Today we vote for our dream’
Independent presidential candidate Monica Macovei called on the Romanians to go to the polls, arguing that this is the only way ‘to transform Romania’ and to reduce ‘any impact of a possible fraud’. ‘We have been longing for a good living at home for a long while. Today we vote for our dream, for justice and I want each of you, when going to the polls, to think what the National Anti-corruption Directorate means for you, a dream or a nightmare. Vote your dream. I feel quite confident about victory, dream and justice,’ Macovei said after casting her ballot at Tudor Arghezi School in Bucharest.
Udrea: ‘I have voted for beautiful Romania, for president able to move country forward’
The PMP’s presidential candidate Elena Udrea, said she has voted for a beautiful Romania, aware of the fact that our country is at a crossroads. ‘I have voted for a beautiful Romania. I voted being aware of the fact that Romania is at a historic crossroads. I have voted for the path of democracy, for independent justice, a strong rule of law, but, at the same time, also for prosperity. I have voted for a president able to build something in Romania, to take Romania at least a step forward,’ Udrea said at the polling station organized at the ‘Mihai Eminescu’ College in Bucharest. ‘A president that cannot be blackmailed and who has only his people as master’, the PMP candidate added.
Candidate Corneliu Vadim Tudor: ‘The first step towards election rigging is represented by fake opinion polls’
Chairman of the Greater Romania Party (PRM) Corneliu Vadim Tudor said that for the first time he is certain that elections are completely pointless and that the way towards vote rigging is paved by fake opinion polls. ‘In these more than 20 years several underworld groups have come into being that have no other job than to steal elections and the first step towards election rigging is represented by fake opinion polls,’ PRM presidential candidate Corneliu Vadim Tudor declared after he cast his ballot at Bucharest School No. 150, where he came accompanied by his wife and two daughters.
PP-DD candidate Diaconescu: ‘I voted for an overhaul of the country, from top to bottom’
Dan Diaconescu, the presidential candidate of the People’s Party – Dan Diaconescu (PP-DD), said Sunday, upon leaving the polling station that he voted for an overhaul of the country, from top to bottom. ‘I have voted for an overhaul of the country, from top to bottom. I have voted against poverty. I hope that at least once in 20 years the Romanians will no longer vote poverty,’ said Diaconescu, who voted in the town of Voluntari, very close to Bucharest City. He explained that by voting poverty he understands ‘Romanians voting the same parties, for the same rulers.’
Diaconescu initially showed up to vote at one of the polling stations opened at the Jean Monet High School in Bucharest, but he was refused because his residential address is in a different quarter. He said his domicile is in the Militari quarter and last time he ran he voted where he filed his bid, claiming that on Sunday he was entitled to vote anywhere because of his right to run for president.
Ion Iliescu: ‘We enter a state of normality’
The honorary chairman of the Social Democratic Party (PSD), former president of Romania, Ion Iliescu expressed hope when exiting the polling station that the political, social life will enter normality. ‘I hope we’ll enter a general normalisation in the political, social life. Premises are, some starts are to be strengthened and it’s only a coherent governance, in which all ruling factors collaborate which could ensure such thing. This is the very essence of this option to today’s vote’, the PSD honorary chairman said, after casting his vote to the ‘Jean Monnet’ high-school in Bucharest.
Romania’s former president has come to the polling place alone, without his wife, Nina. ‘The campaign was not too dense, if we take a look to the first campaigns after 1990. But this is natural, I mean we have entered a process of normalisation. The only element of colour has disappeared from the electoral confrontations’ spectrum, so we enter a state of normality,’ Ion Iliescu specified.
Melescanu: ‘I am happy I could show the people another candidate profile’
Teodor Melescanu, an independent candidate in the presidential elections said he was very pleased to present the people another profile of a candidate. ‘I was very happy I could show the people another profile of a candidate, a balanced, experienced candidate, with love for the people and for the country. The rest is their problem,’ Melescanu said.
Tariceanu: ‘It’s time to close bad chapter in Romania’s political development, Basescu regime’
Calin Popescu-Tariceanu, an independent candidate in the presidential elections, considers that thanks to the vote the Romanians will cast on Sunday, a ‘bad chapter’ comes to an end. ‘It’s time to close a bad chapter in the political development of Romania, and turn over a new leaf meaning the return to normality, strong institutions the Romanians can trust’ Tariceanu stressed after having cast his ballot.
Crin Antonescu: ‘I’ve come to ballot out of respect for this fundamental right’
Liberal senator Crin Antonescu, the former party leader and co-president of the defunct Social Liberal Union (USL, an alliance of Social Democrats and Liberals) said he had come to the ballot for president of Romania out of respect for this fundamental right. ‘I’ve come to the ballot today out of respect for this fundamental right, which finally is the most important gain we’ve made in the last 25 years and out of solidarity with all my fellow countrymen who express a vote today, no matter who they vote for, they put hope in their ballot’, said Antonescu after exercising his voting right. When asked whether he had returned the vote that Prime Minister Victor Ponta, also a contender in Sunday’s ballot, gave him back in 2009, when Antonescu ran for the Romanian top job, the senator answered: ‘No, because that vote was not quite a loan’.
Corina Cretu: ‘I expect Romania to express
pro-European option
by voting in big numbers’
European Commissioner Corina Cretu said that she expects Romania to express its pro-European option by voting in big numbers. ‘I expect Romania to express its pro-European option by going to the polls in big numbers’ Corina Cretu said.
Marko Bela: ‘Future President should be statesman, not politician’
UDMR Senator Marko Bela said after voting, that the future President of Romania should look to the future generations and not just to the next election cycle. ‘‘The future President of Romania should be a statesman and not a politician who works for the next elections. The difference between a statesman and a politician is this: the politician looks ahead only to the next elections, while the statesman looks to future generations’’ said Marko Bela.
Bucharest Mayor Oprescu: ‘My vote went for a healthy and stable Romania’
Bucharest General Mayor Sorin Oprescu said on Sunday morning that he has voted in the first round of the presidential elections for ‘a healthy and stable’ country, adding that he is confident that youth will transform Romania. ‘I have voted for a healthy and stable Romania, for trusting the youth and its power to transform it and make it respected, as it should be. I’m positive my words will became a reality,’ Sorin Oprescu said on leaving the polling place.
ForMin Corlatean: ‘I voted thinking of our brothers beyond the Prut’
Minister of Foreign Affairs Titus Corlatean said: ‘I have voted thinking of our brothers beyond the Prut, from Bessarabia, and when casting my ballot, I prayed that the future president to be able to do all these things for the good of the Romanians and of Romania. He also said that it’s hard to make predictions as regards the vote of the Romanians abroad. Corlatean pointed out that for objective reasons, the number of polling stations, especially in the Republic of Moldova, was increased to 21 from 13 in 2009. When asked if there are enough ballot papers for the Romanians abroad, Corlatean said there have always been sufficient ballot papers.
Democratic Liberal leader Vasile Blaga: ‘Every vote counts’
Democratic Liberal (PDL) leader Vasile Blaga said after casting his ballot in the presidential polls on Sunday that he had voted for the continued Euro-Atlantic road of Romania and for normal Romania. ‘I voted for the continued Euro-Atlantic road of Romania, for normal Romania, for Romania of the work well-done’, he stressed. He urged the Romanians to go to the ballot. ‘I ask the Romanians to use this powerful weapon, the ballot, because each vote counts. A single vote can make the difference between good and evil, between European Romania and going back to times that we do not want’, the PDL chairman added.

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