Famous Liberal MEPs ousted from the party

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The leadership of old National Liberal Party on Wednesday decided to expel MEP Norica Nicolai and Renate Weber from the party, on the ground they joined the Alliance of Liberals and Democrats for Europe (ALDE) in the European Parliament, refusing to adhere to the European People’s Party.

PNL’s National Political Bureau is to have the final say in this matter.

Following the merger between the National Liberal Party and the Democrat Liberal Party and the new Liberal party’s joining EPP last year, Norica Nicolai and Renate Weber decided to stay at ALDE group, to which PNL initially belonged.

The new PNL leaderships asked them to come to EPP group, while even giving them an ultimatum.

After Wednesday decision, Norica Nicolai told Antena 3 that it was a predictable move. “I have never made any compromise during my career. I told PNL congress that I did not agree this merger. It is a move of political honesty,” Nicolai explained.

Norica Nicolai is a lawyer and politician. She had a senator term from 2000 to 2008, and has been a member of the EP since 2009. She was at the center of a conflict between Liberal PM Calin Popescu Tariceanu and president Traian Basescu in early 2008, as the latter rejected Tariceanu’s nomination of Nicolai as Justice minister.

In her turn, Renate Weber said she is not surprised by the party’s decision, yet adding that she would have liked to have a talk with PNL leadership before this decision being enforced. She also said the ousting is not an easy moment, but reconfirmed that her ALDE membership is natural, considering the group’s values.

Renate Weber is also a lawyer and human rights activist. She became MEP in 2007. She is the first Romanian appointed as Chief of an EU Election Observation Mission, and she was Chair of the Soros Foundation in Romania between 1998–2005 and 2006 – 2007. During 2004 – 2005 she was Advisor on constitutional and legislative matters to the President of Romania back then, namely Traian Basescu.

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