Tho top dissidents of the Liberal Party-PNL, a senior member of the governing coalition in Romania, presented an alternative platform for the unification of the center-right political movements in Romania in the city of Pitesti this weekend.
The move comes as political struggles within the governing coalition, formed of Liberals and Democrats, have intensified, culminating with the expulsion of a presidential aide from the Liberal Party.
The platform was presented by two former presidents of PNL, Theodor Stolojan and Valeriu Stoica. Stolojan was expelled from PNL over differing points of view with the party leadership last week. The media has been speculated a similar fate for Stoica as well.
Both are seen as close to President Traian Basescu and have been calling for the unification of PNL with Basescu’s group, the Democratic Party, an idea so far opposed by PNL president, prime minister Calin Popescu Tariceanu.
Their platform for change is supported by several other Liberals excluded from PNL over the past month, including MPs Raluca Turcan and Cristian Boureanu.
The document rejects the idea of a common electoral project with the main opposition group in Romania, the Social Democrats, and starts from the need to “coagulate” the center-right forces from Romania’s political spectrum along the lines of a Federative Union that would bring together the Liberals, the Democratic Party and the small Christian Democratic National Peasants Party.
During yesterday’s event, they attacked PM Tariceanu over his policies as head of the government and head of the governing party. Tariceanu replied in an ironic tone, saying that it’s only “distasteful criticism”.
For his part, Valeriu Stoica presented his points of view in an interview with HotNews.ro, where he said Romanian Liberals needed a strong center-right core, while PNL under the leadership of Tariceanu is leaning more and more to the Left.
And he said his group supported building a strong, Western-style capitalism in Romania and not an “oligarchy-based” capitalism such as that promoted by the now-in-opposition Social Democrats and towards which PNL is now heading.