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First censure motion against Grindeanu Gov’t vetoed

The no confidence vote against Grindeanu Cabine was vetoed in Parliament on Wednesday. The ballot was secret by balls. PSD, ALDE and UDMR abstained from voting, while PNL, USR and PMP voted for the motion.

161 votes in favour and 8 against were cast. The motion would have passed with at least 233 votes in favour.

123 MPs from PNL and USR filed the censure motion against the Grindeanu Cabinet, accusing it of amending the criminal codes on the sly through emergency ordinance in order to help some politicians get away with their criminal files.

 PM Sorin Grindeanu stated that he understands the people’s anger. “I have fully understood the emotion and anger that the EO 13 has generated. A significant part of this country has democratically transmitted to us that the general welfare is not identified in that ordinance (…) I promise that from now on this government will be exclusively one of the dialogue and public consultation,” the prime minister addressed the Parliament before the vote.

At the same time, the premier accused president Iohannis that he is clinching to the Romanians’ protests to rebuild his credibility and to have, as soon as possible, “his government’.

“You heard the Romanian president’s speech yesterday. Besides slogans and the attempt of clinching to the Romanians’ protests to rebuild his credibility, I think one thing is clear-President Iohannis’ aspiration to rather have again, My Government!,” PM Grindeanu stated.

Reminding that the Parliament has passed the 2017 state budget on Tuesday and that his cabinet has all levers to implement the ruling programme “for which Romanians have voted for PSD”, the PM urged to get down to business.

“I think we have a duty to the popular confidence that we have won to the polls and we must keep assuming to rule this country. Please, don’t accept this game anymore and let’s not walk into the trap one more time. I hope we’ll get things right as of today and let’s get back to business!”, Grindeanu said.

In his turn, the Senate Speaker Calin Popescu Tariceanu (also ALDE co-chair) said he respects the right of the protesters and that the Gov’t has made a step forward on the ordinance. However, he slammed the head of state’s stance, as well as the Liberals’ move to file the censure motion. “The role of the leaders is not to promote the split. The motion bribgs again one of the PNL’s obsessions, the corruption. You must see all corruption. Do you see the corruption of the force institutions? The political class started to reform itself, the institutions-not. I saw that heads of the force institutions are corrupted with power. Iohannis is ready to split Romania and appoint <his own> government,” Tariceanu said.

In his turn, the PSD chairman, speaker of the Chamber of Deputies, Liviu Dragnea accused president Iohannis, PNL and USR of being interested in a “mere political capital”, with the risk of “breaking Romania”. “When will you accept that you lost elections? It’s not the first time that PSD is ruling in hostile conditions (…) Let the Gov’t rule. Its programme has been challenged, but voted by the Romanians (…) The Government understood the position of the people in the streets and gave up Ordinance 13,” Dragnea stated, adding that he would have expected an invitation to re-draft these laws together, here in Parliament.

“These amendments must be carried out to offer judges legal tools and to keep people away from an unjust judgment,” the SocDem chairman stated. “This motion is not helping Romania. You want to continue the electoral campaign. We’ll rule Romania and Romania will grow regardless of how much you trip us!,” Dragnea concluded.

The Liberals argued that the censure motion is a political sanction against an unacceptable behavior.

“<At night like thieves> has become the slogan of this government. You have forgotten about people, the many. You have abandoned the country’s priorities and you have locked yourselves in the Victoria Palace at night in order to adopt laws that would save you. Three men cannot decide the destiny of a country,” the PNL interim chairwoman Raluca Turcan stated.

She added that Dragnea, Tariceanu and Grindeanu have ruined Romania’s image the way Iliescu has managed to do when he called on the miners.

“An entire country has caught you red-handed. No government has dared so far be so overtly accomplice to thieves. You’ve cheated the people’s vote and ruined the hope, “ Turcan argued.

According to the PNL leader, the repealing of the ordinance will not wash the sins. “The political mistake stays and you must pay with your positions. Romanians are aware that you cannot reach prosperity if the law is enforced arbitrarily (…) Be on the people’s side, not on Dragnea’s. It’s time for this government to quit or be sacked,” Turcan concluded. During this part of the speech more MPs of the oppositions stood up their phones with their flashlights on, just like protesters used to do in Victorie Square several days ago.

In his turn, the USR chairman Nicusor Dan said that it’s not PM Grindeanu to draft the ordinance, but he just did “what his party chief told him to”.

“Grindeanu lost confidence. National security and the economic safety are also up to the confidence in the Government (…) The real author if this crisis, Liviu Dragnea, would be capable of blowing up Romania in order to solve his criminal files. You have the possibility to be on the right side of history or to support a simple man with two files,” Nicusor Dan said.

As for the UDMR, leader Kelemen Hunor said that “their concern is not the fate of Grindeanu Gov’t, but if there are a separation of the state powers in Romania in 2017.”

As for the former president Traian Basescu, chairman of the PMP, he announced that his party would vote against the PSD-ALDE Government, but at the same time he pleaded for the revision of the abuse of office definition.

“I have opposed the definition of the abuse of office for long time. CCR says that the abuse of office should mean a breach of a law provision. The abuse of office is related to the serious injury to a person or to an institution. Why putting a man in jail for he has made a mistake?,” Basescu said in his speech.

In the end, he asked PM Grindeanu to decide what kind of Executive they want to be.

“Mr. Grindeanu, you must decide what kind of Executive you want to be. Are you an Executive who has an ayatollah at the party, who decides what is good or wrong or an Executive where the decisions belong to the prime minister?”

As Basescu was speaking on the time allotted to the Social Democrat Party, chairman Liviu Dragnea replied: “Mr. president, it happens only in Romania that a person can curse you on your time.”

Traian Basescu also told Liviu Dragnea to keep his mouth shut as he also has a file being charged with abuse of office, with Dragnea retorting that “it’s not the case in his case” and “this is why it happens now all these.”

 

About Alina Grigoras Butu