AUR starts raising signatures to impeach President Iohannis. PSD will consider it when USR joins action. Ciolos: Impeachment is not a solution


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AUR parliamentary party has announced on Monday that it started raising signatures to impeach President Klaus Iohannis. AUR co-chairman Georghe Simion claimed that “including Liberal MPs” have signed the initiative.

“Today, November 1, we announce the kick off of procedures to impeach President Klaus Iohannis. We started to raise signatures among lawmakers. More MPs from several parties promised they will sign (…) We invite all political parties to join our initiative. Even MPs from PNL have signed”, Simion said. However, later on he revised his statement, saying that there MPs from PNL who “tend to” endorse the idea of impeachment.

Simion argued that he had saw the former PNL chairman Ludovic Orban on TV talking about the suspension of the head of state, adding he will meet Orban and have a discussion about that.
PSD, USR stances
PSD first vice-president Sorin Grindeanu said today that the Social Democrats will discuss about this initiative of impeaching President Iohannis when USR joins the initiative as well.
“If Mr. Cioloş (e.n. Dacian Ciolos, USR chair) comes to support this approach, we will certainly hold an emergency meeting of the National Political Council to clarify the PSD’s point of view“, Grindeanu stated.

However, USR chairman Dacian Cioloş replied that the suspension of President Klaus Iohannis is not a solution to the current crisis, the priority being the inauguration of a new government. “Suspending the President now is not a solution. We do not see what it means to resolve the crisis we are now going through,” he told Digi 24 on Monday.

How can be a President be impeached?

According to the Constitution, the President of Romania may be suspended from office by the Parliament, after consulting the Constitutional Court, in case of committing serious acts that violate the provisions of the Constitution.

The President may give an explanation to Parliament as to the facts alleged against him.

The proposal for suspension from office may be initiated by at least one third of the number of deputies and senators and shall be notified without delay to the President.

If the proposed suspension is approved, a referendum on the dismissal of the President shall be held within 30 days.

Traian Băsescu, the  President suspended twice, but never dismissed

In Romania there are two precedents for initiating the suspension procedure, each time being against Traian Băsescu. He was twice suspended from office by Parliament five years later, but both referendums were invalidated for his dismissal.

The first suspension initiative against Basescu was in February 2007, with a referendum for impeachment being held in May 2007. 74% of the votes cast then were against the dismissal of the head of state, with a turnout of 44.45% compared to 50%, as provided by law.

The second time the impeachment procedure took place against Basescu was in July 2012, when Parliament voted for the suspension of the head of state. The suspension was made by USL, a former alliance between PSD and PNL.
This time, the result of the referendum was in favor of the dismissal of Traian Băsescu. 46.24% of the citizens with the right to vote went to the polls. 87.52% (7,403,836) voted YES, and 11.15% voted NO. However, the referendum was invalidated by the Constitutional Court on the grounds that it did not meet the required quorum for voting.

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