Vol. 3 No.1  

Issue of the month

Who is set to benefit from the current conflict between President Basescu and Prime Minister Tariceanu over a letter Tariceanu sent to Basescu, which implied he wanted the nation's leader to interfere in a prosecution case involving Rompetrol?

Stelian Tanase, political analyst and academic

     I think this episode is not over yet. It is for the first time when Basescu is not the captain on this business. I think former presidential counsellor Elena Udrea [who revealed the letter existed in a television interview] took a decision without letting Basescu know. Basescu's image has suffered in this scandal and I think he knew this when he appeared on television and tried to hush up the story. He was supposed to think about it for a couple of days and then come up with a story and not hurry through the revelations as he did. If I was Basescu I would fire Elena Udrea and ban her speaking on behalf of the Democratic Party.

Leonard Orban, EU Commissioner on multilingualism

     At the level of the European Commission, crises like this are investigated with the maximum attention, and reactions do not become public so rapidly. At the same time, debates or discussions like these exist in all member states, the main idea is for such an issue not to impede the evolution of reforms Romania has to continue. We still have some battles ahead, such as in justice, the fight against corruption and agriculture, and if this crisis turns into an issue, it could trigger the safeguard clause.

Ludovic Orban, National Liberal Party member, deputy mayor of Bucharest

     In no case will Basescu benefit. The Social Democratic Party (PSD) and other parties like the Greater Romania Party (PRM) and the New Generation Party (PNG) might take advantage and win some points in perception and maybe a small gain in electoral percentage.

Cristian Boureanu, one of the founding members of the Liberal Democrat Party (PLD)

     I believe that the conflict won't bring benefits to either of the two sides involved. If Tariceanu is punished for his abuses, Basescu could win out from this. But the solidarity between the Romanian political class which has covered for Tariceanu leads to the loss of credibility in Parliament instead of cleaning the Government from those who are bringing disrepute upon the Romanian political system. I'm not saying that there are guilty or angelic figures in the Romanian political environment, but any other western democracy would have brought benefits to its society by punishing the both sides involved. The Liberal Democratic Party (PLD) might win from this conflict, but, at the same time, so might the extremist parties.