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Carol singers

de Adrian Năstase    |    12 Noi 2008   •   00:00

I have bad news. Traian Băsescu is preparing to repeat the same scenario. The President is ready for early elections, Mr. Lazaroiu calmly says. In this variant, the elections do not matter any more.

The star of the Romanian winter holidays this year will probably not be the well-known character with a beard and sleigh pulled by reindeers, but the 1st paragraph of Article 103 in the Constitution. The carols that the representatives of the President have started to sing already make it quite possible. The respective article mentions the way in which the PM names the candidate after the elections. Its interpretation and application will lead to the political mixture of the new executive and the parliamentary majority behind it.

Since it is quite short, this article can be interpreted in several ways. Must the President take into account the already existing agreements between the parties when trying to form a majority? Of course not, the President’s representatives will say. The Head of the State does what he wants! So, for example, in a recent interview, presidential adviser Sebastian Lazaroiu says that, if no party has an absolute majority, it cannot claim a certain PM from the President. Maybe we would squabble less if we noticed that this article is not alone in the world. It is part of a text, which is called the Constitution, which defines quite exactly the presidential institution as a whole. Another article, no. 80, paragraph 2, says a fundamental thing about this institution. The President “sees that the Constitution is abided and the public authorities function well”.

Therefore, whenever he takes a decision, the President must take into consideration the good functioning of the state. There should be no long periods of provisional or interim. The administration should be strong, with a clear political mandate, based on a functional majority. There should be no risk of bottlenecks. Look at what happened in politics after 2005. Does it seem that Traian Băsescu respected this article? After the elections in 2004, he composed a struggling and artificial parliamentary majority, which was broken very quickly. Moreover, he always tried to destroy this majority and to reach early elections to obtain more personal power through his personal party. But, from the perspective of the general interest, the state has remained in stand-by. The European integration has not advanced at all. The institutions have watched powerless their Heads fighting, visiting the DNA or changing every two months.

I have bad news. Traian Băsescu is preparing to repeat the same scenario. He believes that the parties should wait until the moment of the nominalization of a PM candidate to start the negotiations afterwards. If they cannot reach a conclusion together with him more than twice, the President is ready for early elections, Mr. Lazaroiu calmly says to us.

In this variant, the elections don’t even matter. Actually, we kind of know the number and names of the parties that will enter the Parliament. No compatibilities are important here. It doesn’t matter that, in all countries, the majorities are done and undone in the Parliament, but not by the Presidency. But the worst thing is the off-hand way in which the public interest is pushed aside again. In the situation described, it is very possible that we will have a new period of provisional Government. We could get to another executive with members that don’t have anything in common that will prefer arguing and blocking each other instead of getting to facts. Or, infinitely worse, we could get to other elections, perfectly useless.

All this circus in wintertime, with the economic crisis in our arms, with unemployed people coming back home, with stopped construction sites and investments and people waiting for solutions that receive only lame TV shows. I believe we should think about all these whenever Traian Băsescu will invoke seriously the “national interest” right before Christmas.

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