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May 17, 2022

Surprise return to PSD. Are Liviu Dragnea and Catalin Ivan burying the hatchet?

Social Democrat interim chairman Liviu Dragnea and MEP Catalin Ivan (photo) have exchanged lines from a distance lately. If the two had a tough fight in the party, they now seem willing to make peace. Dragnea thinks MEP Catalin Ivan could have a good future in the party. Dragnea said that when he was asked about Traian Basescu’s statement that Ivan would have been the ideal president for PSD.
‘To be honest, I am no longer very interested in what Traian Basescu has to say and, in general in what he or the opposition have to say on what should be done in our party. On the other hand, Catalin Ivan is a young man who, in my opinion, should be retrieved for the party, it seems that he also has a very good activity in the European Parliament. It is time we started strengthening our ranks and everybody became involved. Yes, I will talk to him, I believe he can have a good future in the party’, Dragnea said.
Liviu Dragnea, however, has not always felt the same way about Catalin Ivan. In 2014, the PSD leader was saying: ‘Catalin Ivan is a cheeky kid powered by a key turned by Vanghelie and who, unfortunately, has not managed to understand what he started in PSD’.
MEP Catalin Ivan told Realitatea TV that he had not left PSD for a second and that, in fact, he had been in a prolonged transfer process.
‘I did not leave PSD for a second. I have not resigned nor have I been dismissed. I have not been outside the party for a moment. I am happy to hear Liviu Dragnea’s statement. As far as I am concerned, I never left. I have been in a prolonged transfer procedure. It seems normal to become an active member of PSD again’, Catalin Ivan said and added that those were all details he and Liviu Dragnea would clarify.
He also said that, in his view, Dragnea’s attitude was right. ‘All resources should be pooled in a party. We may have distinct opinions at times, but the important thing is for us to be united’, said the MEP.
Asked if Liviu Dragnea or Victor Ponta had contacted him, Ivan said: Mr. Ponta in now way, Liviu Dragnea will probably contact me. I am totally open’.
Some time ago, Liviu Dragnea had an altercation with Catalin Ivan, whom he called ‘cheeky kid’, powered by ‘a key turned by Vanghelie’. Ivan responded, accusing Dragnea of calling him ‘cheeky’ just because he disagreed with the proposals made by the executive president.

“Catalin Ivan is a young man that has to be recovered by the party”

Social-Democrat Party (PSD) MEP Catalin Ivan “is a young man that has to be recovered for the party,” PSD Interim President Liviu Dragnea stated on Sunday, adding that he will have a talk with Ivan.
“He is a young man that has to be recovered for the party (…) I understand he has very good activity as MEP. I will have a talk with him. With more patience and wisdom he might have a good future in PSD,” Dragnea said.
In September, Ivan claimed that things seem to go in a good direction within PSD and he can no longer criticize party leader Liviu Dragnea since the talks within PSD are focusing more on projects and less on persons. Prior to that, the MEP had repeatedly criticized Dragnea, asking him to resign from his position within the party.
One of the most vocal and critical party members toward PSD’s leadership, Social-Democrat MEP Catalin Ivan was in fact excluded from the party in May 2015, by the Bucharest District 1 branch, a decision he appealed against. The decision was taken after the party branch’s leadership announced in March the decision to suspend his party membership for a period of 12 months.
Catalin Ivan came into conflict with the party’s current leadership immediately after the presidential elections, when he asked for the elections failure to be analyzed and for those who managed the elections campaign to take responsibility for it. In fact, right before he was excluded from PSD he was the only Social-Democrat who had officially announced his candidacy for the position of party president.

Catalin Ivan: Dragnea should show decency and give up his attacks on Ponta

Social Democrat MEP Catalin Ivan wrote on Thursday on his personal Facebook page that he recommends Liviu Dragnea to show “decency” and to no longer attack Victor Ponta, pointing out that he will reveal things about his “personal games” within the party.
Catalin Ivan wrote that Liviu Dragnea should give up his attacks on Victor Ponta while touring party branches. “I ask (…) Liviu Dragnea to show minimum decency in his travels throughout the country and, as far as possible, to give up his embarrassing attacks on Victor Ponta,” MEP Catalin Ivan, excluded from PSD, wrote.
The MEP considers that Liviu Dragnea, the party’s current political coordinator, has no right to talk about the crisis the Social-Democrat party finds itself in considering that he is responsible for the situation in which his former colleagues find themselves, being more preoccupied with personal games with the goal of taking over the leadership of PSD.
“He is the last person justified to attack Victor Ponta, the more so since the whole year last year he had but one preoccupation, namely that of taking over as much public relations capital from Ponta as possible in order to secure the position of PSD President for himself once Ponta would have become Romanian President. There was no electoral rally or important meeting in which Victor Ponta took part last year without Liviu Dragnea appearing behind him,” the MEP claims.
Catalin Ivan also believes that Liviu Dragnea currently holds “a fictitious position” as a result of his “blackmail” against the PSD leadership, namely after he threatened to split the party. He stated that Dragnea bought his influence within PSD “by using public funds which he allocated, provided he did, mostly to the mayors that understood that he is in fact the party leader, thus undermining Victor Ponta’s authority within the party.”
Another argument invoked by Catalin Ivan has to do with the fact that Dragnea coordinated the latest election campaigns and “buried” two presidential candidates that were credited as favorites, namely Mircea Geoana and Victor Ponta. Moreover, the MEP claims that the same Liviu Dragnea blocked any analysis of the presidential elections failure in November 2014 by resorting to “a trick” in order to postpone the party’s congress meeting.
“Mr. Dragnea, PSD needs a new, European, modern project that would tear us apart for good from the shortcomings of a shallow, neo-communist manner of engaging in politics. (…) You represent precisely that manner of engaging in politics, based on local fiefdoms, at the limit of the law if not beyond it, based on betrayals, hidden arrangements, personal interests at the expense of the party,” the MEP added.

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