The USR is not everyone’s cup of tea and it is clear that they are still on a very steep learning curve as a party: it was, after all, formed less than a year ago. The lack of any other real parliamentary opposition to the ruling PSD-ALDE coalition has not worked in their favour: people’s expectations for them are far too high to be realistic.
What they have been very successful in doing so far however is waging guerrilla war within parliament, particularly in ensuring that the PSD is not allowed to do everything behind closed doors. Meetings that would otherwise be secret are broadcast or recorded on mobile phones, minutes are made public and the general machinations of parliament that the PSD (and, to be honest, the PNL) would prefer to remain as opaque as possible are explained and laid bare for all to see.
One example emerged last night.
A USR MP, Cornel Zainea, posted a video on Facebook which clearly shows him (and six others) voting against the nomination of ALDE leader Daniel Constantatin as Minister of the Environment during parliamentary select committee hearings. Watch the video and you will see that the leader of the select committee, Doina Adriana Pana, clearly says that there are seven votes against Constantin’s appointment.
However… In the official minute of the meeting (which you can view here) there are seven abstentions, and not a single vote against.
Now this is not in the grand scheme of things a big deal: the outcome of the vote was not affected. It does, however, constitute a crime (entering false information into official documents) and does, we think, demonstrate rather well exactly how the PSD thinks it can run Romania.
Or should that be ruin Romania?