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Teodor Melescanu elected Senate President


Alliance of Liberals and Democrats (ALDE) Senator Teodor Melescanu was elected President of the Romanian Senate in a run-off on Tuesday having garnered 73 votes for in a plenary session to his opponent Alina Gheorghiu's 59.

Of 136 attending senators, 134 voted and two votes were invalidated. 

Alina Gorghiu was voted in the run-off by the National Liberal Party (PNL), Save Romania Union (USR), the Hungarian Democratic Union of Romania (UDMR) and the Alliance of Liberals and Democrats (ALDE) senators.

In the first round Ion Popa also competed on behalf of ALDE.

Alliance of Liberals and Democrats (ALDE) senatorial group leader Calin Popescu-Tariceanu announced on Tuesday after the election of Teodor Melescanu at the helm of the Senate, that the party will notify the Constitutional Court of Romania (CCR) for the manner in which he was elected. 

"I have learned the voting result and we, those in the ALDE, find that this election has been made with the violation of the provisions of the Regulation, therefore, I bring to your knowledge that this thing won't remain without consequences, we will notify the CCR and I invite all those who agree with this point of view to file their signatures on the Court notification, which we will immediately prepare," Tariceanu stated.

He stated that the ALDE group want to appoint their representative in the Standing Bureau, thus, he invited his senator colleagues to negotiations.

After the Social Democratic Party (PSD) parliamentary group proposed Teodor Melescanu as a candidate for the Senate President office, Tariceanu argued that this demarche breaches the Regulation.

"We have a very serious procedural problem, because the Senate Regulation clearly stipulates that the election of the President is being made based on the proposals forwarded by the parliamentary groups, one proposal from each group. I want you to take note that the ALDE group exercises the right to have its own proposal, which we made in the person of Ion Popa, there cannot be two proposals belonging to the same group. Mr Senator Melescanu, whom you propose, may be your candidate, with the condition of not being part of the ALDE group, because, otherwise, the regulatory provision according to which each group makes one single proposal is being breached. There cannot be two proposals belonging to the ALDE group, but only one. Please take note of this aspect," Tariceanu stated in the plenary meeting of the Senate.

În turn, national leader of the Social Democratic Party (PSD – at rule) Viorica Dancila congratulated Teodor Melescanu on Tuesday on being elected chairman of the Romanian Senate, adding that the vote in the Senate indicates that PSD still has a majority in Parliament.

"Congratulations to Mr Teodor Melescanu on being elected chairman of Romania's Senate! Today's vote certifies that PSD still holds a majority in Parliament and that, as I said last night, we have the courage and confidence to come up for a vote with a new government," Dancila said in a Facebook post on Tuesday.

The PSD leader argues that the Alliance of Liberals and Democrats (ALDE) having exited the government was taken by "a small cadre" of ALDE, and Melescanu's election to the Senate leadership shows that there are "many responsible people" among ALDE members.

"We have chosen to support Mr Melescanu to reconfirm our good faith and owning up to government programme we started with in 2016, as well as our respect to those who have preferred not to run away from responsibilities. Pulling out of the government was taken by a small ALDE cadre, and today's vote as well as the wish of Mr Melescanu and other colleagues to keep this government going on - confirm that there are many responsible people in this party who respect the commitment we have made, together, to the people. Despite all speculation and attacks of the candidates by trade, we continue on the road we have taken, that of respect to Romanians and keeping the promises made," added Dancila.