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What the newspapers say: November 28, 2008

de Radu Rizea
Vineri, 28 noiembrie 2008, 4:34 English | Press Review

A couple of days before the elections, politics still fail to attract any serious attention in the printed media, despite all the fuss on TV. Except for a few speculations and scenarios about the parties to form the future government, most articles contain more than a critical attitude towards the political class. 50% participation rate - this is the figure that all papers estimate or give as a sure thing.

Evenimentul Zilei counts the dinosaurs in the Parliament, finding the deputies and senators who still run for a seat, after almost 20 years of uninterrupted service, throughout all mandates since 1990. The Hungarian Democrats lead in the top, with nine candidates still running for the Senate or the House of Deputies, after completing 5 mandates and 3 candidates with four mandates. They are followed by Social - Democrats (5 and 4, respectively), Democrat-Liberals (1 + 3) and Liberals - 4 candidates who completed 4 mandates.

Romania Libera
counts the winners and the losers of the last four years, finding that all the leaders of the main parties are on an ascending trend - president Traian Basescu, Prime Minister Calin Popescu Tariceanu, Social Democrat Mircea Geoana and Democrat-Liberal Theodor Stolojan. The ones who lost are the far-right leader Corneliu Vadim Tudor, the controversial businessman Gigi Becali (leader of the New Generation Party) and quasi-anonymous Cozmin Gusa, who has been in the highlight for a while, but failed to take any advantage on the opportunity.

But the electoral campaign still has some surprises up the sleeve, and it seems that it matters a lot who is in the important offices at the moment. Prime Minister Calin Popescu Tariceanu, for example, made to important moves on Thursday, the last-but-one campaigning day: he approved maternal pensions worth 85% of the income before the birth for mothers, instead of the 600 RON aid (some 170 Euros) and also approved a 650 million RON spending for acquiring computers for 445,000 9th and 10th grade students. The first computers to be handed to students were given away by the Prime Minister himself, in the very college where he candidates, Evenimentul Zilei reads.

Same Evenimentul Zilei publishes an analysis of the campaign, showing that it was a "sad" and "pushing each other around" period.

The everyday life in the rest of the country was also affected by the nearing elections. A massive riot, organized by interlopers in all major detention centers, was prevented on Thursday. Convicts intended to start the riot immediately after the elections, demanding pardons or a collective amnesty. During the inspections to follow, Police found in the inmates' cells 113 mobile phones, 226 blades, knives and other weapons, an improvised device for producing alcohol, 140 liters of alcohol and 19 heroine balls. 200 inmates were transferred from one jail to another and several hundreds were sent to isolation, in order to calm things down, Gandul informs.

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