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Bucharest
December 1, 2020
EDITORIAL

Ludovic Orban, next level toward the true mayor of Bucharest

Ludovic Orban’s withdrawal from the electoral race in fact marks the most important turning point in everything that the reformation of the current political class has meant for months, I could even say for over a year, ever since Klaus Iohannis became president. This moment was in fact not at all surprising for some of us, but was taken to a high degree of paroxysm with the help of the press, precisely because it underscores an essential thing:

How the intrigue is in fact ensuing behind this great picture of local elections and especially of the elections for the Bucharest City Hall.

Because the Bucharest Mayor is a small-scale replica of the Head of State. The capital of any state in the world is not just the heart of that country but also particularly the generator of the starting point of the state’s high-level politics. To be seen, in our case, the fact that a former Bucharest mayor ended up head of state, the very governance structure of the capital looking like the governance structure of the state.

The question that continues to remain the defining hallmark of this campaign, that is completely distinct from previous ones, is the one related to the unnaturalness of the profile of the candidates that have entered the race for the Bucharest City Hall at least so far.

We notice that the parties ranked as the largest in Romania chose candidates manifestly fully eroded from the standpoint of public relations and foreign to the wide approval of the voting public, or even hostile in the overall public perception.

The same parties are choosing candidates who are questionable from the standpoint of any kind of integrity, at a moment when the judicial-political campaign seems to have reached its apex.

If this is the candidates’ profile, why do they have to be launched, only to be then withdrawn through the DNA connection?

This whole spectacle looks strikingly similar to a public execution of someone you, as a party, consider to be your most valuable person for such a position. And, ironically, the execution comes via the party. Not via the DNA. And it comes with an extraordinary ferocity, like a ritualistic sacrifice, being clear that not only is the image of the person concerned destroyed but the very image of the party and its subsequent potential to win and to lift itself above all other political elements on the scene is definitively compromised.

Why?

There are several possible answers, one of which is certainly the correct one.

  1. In line with the Iohannis model, there is a unitary strategy behind what can be seen and known, one meant to perform an on-the-go changing of the current political class, apparently on the grounds of “justice” and popular “will.”
  2. Because neither the Left nor the Right no longer have any other correct formula for maintaining the illusion of a balanced and viable political spectrum.
  3. Because a different band of political actors is already prepared, one that would be implemented on the go and through moments such as the Orban one. Moments with a launch pad effect, when, by dislocating an important seat in the political space, you automatically propel the other seat that continues to have a holder. In this case, Gabriela Vranceanu Firea. With the surprise that would definitively mark this stage being set to come in the midst of the elections campaign. Coming down as unexpectedly as a bucket of cold water on top of the heads of the voters, when even the aforementioned seat, presented as the only winning horse by all political sides, would disappear, the real winner thus emerging. The one who is now probably in plain sight. But without standing out too much, not being taken into consideration by (almost) anybody.

My concluding note is that we should not look at any of the current figures who are manoeuvred and presented as having redoubtable chances.

Let us not forget the Sorin Oprescu moment and, more recently, the moment Crin Antonescu gave up his candidacy in Klaus Iohannis’s favour.

So, from now on, I believe all attention should focus not on what we already see and know, but on what is not seen, is not said, but is more than obvious.

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