The Romanian political class has had a prompt reaction to the assessment made by the European Parliament and the European Commission.
Tuesday’s vote on the resolution issued by the European Parliament and the release of the Cooperation and Verification Mechanism report by the EC, both equally critical of the performance of the Power in Bucharest, have fuelled the already heated debates and polemics on the Romanian political scene. The European assessments are like two bad grades for the current governance, says President Klaus Iohannis, a consistent critic of the cabinet made up of the Social Democratic Party and the Alliance of Liberals and Democrats.
Klaus Iohannis: “These multiple changes and intentions to change the justice laws and the Criminal Codes have drawn public attention in a negative way. These things are extremely detrimental to Romania. Obviously, these two documents are practically telling us that Romania slipped back to the point it was 11 years ago, before joining the union.”
Her back against the wall, the Social Democratic Prime Minister, Viorica Dancila says Romania should not be judged by the documents drafted somewhere else and promises that her cabinet will respond.
Viorica Dăncilă: “Let us not judge Romania now only based on certain criticism, some more or less real and realistic resolutions, based on certain things that some people are saying. We will respond to those things.”
The leader of the Social Democratic Party and the strongman of the coalition, Liviu Dragnea, believes, in his turn, that beyond any resolutions and CVM report, other issues are important to Romania, such as healthcare and education. In turn, the leader of the Alliance of Liberals and Democrats, the junior party in the ruling coalition, Călin Popescu-Tăriceanu, believes the CVM report is not objective and he accuses the European Commission of having politicised it.
Călin Popescu-Tăriceanu: “The Commission steps into an unjustified political area, because the report is mainly a technical instrument and I’ve lately seen a series of political approaches which cast doubt on the way in which the Commission is working with the member states. I don’t believe the Commission could question the options made by the member states regarding some domains which don’t fall in what we can call the logics of subsidiarity.”
In exchange, the leader of the National Liberal Party, in opposition, Ludovic Orban, is accusing the Power of pushing Romania to the outskirts of the continent.
This standpoint is also shared by the President of the Save Romania Union, Dan Barna: “This government has managed to take Romania to the periphery of Europe. Now, we are clearly and explicitly behind Bulgaria as well, and the next step is outside Europe. This government should step down and we are calling for the resignation of this government. Liviu Dragnea and the Social Democratic Party are currently dragging Romania out of Europe, we are also lagging behind Bulgaria, with nobody left behind us.”
The leader of the People’s Movement Party, Eugen Tomac, also says that after it has never synchronised itself with Brussels, the current government has got a red card from the community leaders.