By Daniela Baragan
The Democrat-Liberals will have to decide tomorrow whether they will continue to support Vasile Blaga as PDL President or whether they will leave the party in the hands of a woman – Elena Udrea or Monica Macovei. Udrea is backed by Traian Basescu.
More than 5,000 delegates from all over the country are expected tomorrow at PDL’s National Convention in which the Democrat-Liberals’ new leadership will be elected. Party president Vasile Blaga entered the race with a motion titled “Right Romania. PDL – policies beyond slogans,” former Development and Tourism Minister Elena Udrea entered the race with the motion “The new PDL. A new Romania,” while MEP Monica Macovei filed her bid titled “The Reformers.” The final will pit Blaga against Udrea, the PDL president is starting off from pole position judging by the support signatures he obtained from the heads of the party’s branches. Thus, Blaga is supported by 29 branches and Udrea by 13. We are talking however by the branches with the highest number of delegates, the branches in Neamt, Dambovita, Cluj, Arad, Bistrita, Sibiu, Bacau and Brasov being among them. In Bucharest, Blaga obtained the support of the District 4, District 6, District 2 and District 5 branches, while Udrea stakes on PDL’s District 1 branch, the same source points out.
The announcements of support for one of the three candidates continued yesterday too, PDL Cluj President Daniel Buda stating that the branch’s delegates at the party’s National Convention (180 delegates – editor’s note) will vote how they please. “I personally expressed my option for Elena Udrea as party president,” Buda stated, being quoted by Mediafax. The former development minister is also supported by PDL Prahova President Roberta Anastase who stated yesterday that Udrea is a politician that does not leave one indifferent and who is part of the team of young politicians “coached” by Traian Basescu.“I don’t support Elena just because she has the same “defect” I have, namely that of being a woman. She is a political leader that one appreciates or not, loves or hates, but that doesn’t leave one indifferent,” Anastase stated. The delegation of PDL Prahova will consist of 208 delegates, being the most numerous delegations in the country. Its size is based on the results obtained in 2012. On the other hand, the representatives of the PDL Constanta branch, which consists of 111 delegates, announced that they will support Vasile Blaga at the party’s National Convention.In what concerns support among PDL leaders, Blaga stakes on the support of PDL Secretary General Gheorghe Flutur, First Vice President Cezar Preda, former premier Teodor Stolojan and MP Raluca Turcan.
Udrea stakes on the support of former PDL President Emil Boc, PDL Neamt President Gheorghe Stefan, Arad Mayor Gheorghe Falca and Brasov Mayor George Scripcaru. Apart from that, the former development minister stakes on the support of President Traian Basescu who publicly expressed, during a visit in Cluj, his support for his former presidential aide. That support is enormously significant considering that the Democrat-Liberals continue to take heed of the opinion of their former leader (Basescu – editor’s note) when adopting decisions.The last to join the race for the top position in PDL, with the purpose of “stealing votes from Blaga,” as unveiled by Democrat-Liberal sources some time ago, Macovei is supported by the group of ‘Reformists,’ which includes former PDL spokesman Sever Voinescu, MEP Cristian Preda and the former minister of Foreign Affairs, Teodor Baconschi.
Udrea is sure about winning the elections
In an interview with Ziare.com, Elena Udrea declared herself convinced that she will win the vote tomorrow, during the convention. She claims that she is 300 ballots ahead of Vasile Blaga. Asked about the role of Traian Basescu in the internal campaign of PDL, she admitted that the messages sent by the president are “very important” for the party. “The party had a successful partnership with Traian Basescu, has confidence in Traian Basescu and many believe this partnership must go on, and I am one of them. Thus, what the president says is important,” Udrea mentioned. However she expressed fears about important irregularities that could appear during the congress, given that most members of the committee in charge with organising the convention support her rival.
Yet, Udrea claims that she does not plan to leave PDL, even if she loses the elections in suspect conditions: “I will remain with PDL in any conditions. I hope that we will not be in the situation of accusing frauds. This happens in PSD. More recently, in PNL too, Mr. Chiliman accuses the incorrect way delegate lists were drawn for their congress. This must not also happen in PDL”. Asked about what will happen with the ‘Macovei wing’, with PDL’s intellectuals if she becomes the president of the party, she affirmed that they must stay and have an important role in the leadership of PDL.