Nameless Centre-Right Coalition Unveiled in Romania

Former ruling Democrat Liberal Party, PDL, has formed a new alliance of conservative parties ahead of December’s general elections – bu they have yet to come up with a name.“We are proposing a political platform based on centre-right values with the main aim of winning the next parliamentary elections,” Vasile Blaga, head of the former ruling Democrat Liberal Party, said on Wednesday, unveiling the new coalition.

The new coalition, which still has no name, is centered around Blaga’s PDL and includes the opposition Christian Democrat Party, PNTCD, and three other small parties.For now, the alliance will be led by all four co-presidents while its ethics commission will be led by a former Justice Minister, Monica Macovei, a long-time anti-corruption campaigner.

Blaga said that he recognized that the alliance’s main problem is lack of time.

“The next general elections are on 2 December, so we have only a short period of time to convince people to follow us,” Blaga said.

Analysts say that the close relations between the PDL and Romania’s unpopular President, Traian Basescu, are another potential hindrance.

“The risk is that the same people who were in favour of impeaching the President won’t vote for the coalition.

“If 7.4 million of them vote against it, as they did in the referendum, then the PDL will disappear from the political map, even if it merges into a broader Christian conservative movement,” journalist Ion Ionita said.

Ionit was referring to the July 29 referendum on the President’s future in which an overwhelming majority voted to impeach him.

The result was not deemed valid because the turnout did not exceed the required threshold of 50 per cent.

Both Basescu and the PDL lost support over the widely disliked health reforms and austerity measures with which they were associated.

In July 2010, the government cut civil servants’ wages by 25 per cent, while thousands of state jobs were axed and VAT was increased by 5 per cent to 24 per cent.

Recent polls suggest that the ruling centre-left coalition of Victor Ponta remains on course to win the general election, even if its ratings have slipped a little as a result of the undignified power struggle between the Prime Minister and the President.

A recent survey suggested that the PDL would get 23 per cent of the vote in a general election, well down on its 33 per cent showing in the elections in 2008.

Ponta’s Social Liberal Union, USL, meanwhile, is tipped to win around 54 per cent of the vote.

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