One of the perennial questions of Slovene election cycles as of late is WWJZD. What will Zoran Janković do. For some reason the mayor of Ljubljana is still considered a force to be reckoned with in national politics and his shadow seems to loom large over for many on the right wing (and some on the left as well), often-times plunging them in a psychosis-like mental state where they being seeing everything that is happening as interventions by the Deep State/Udbomafia/Uncles-in-the-shadows/Lizard people [in a Slavoj Žižek voice] and so on and so on…. And this latest bout paranioia was not helped by Janković’s press conference earlier today where he said he will be somehow getting involved in the national elections
Zoran Janković (source)
You’d be forgiven for forgetting, but the mayor of Ljubljana still moonlights as president of Positive Slovenia (PS), a party which by virtue of himself as a charismatic leader, some very clever PR and a fair dose of tactical voting, narrowly won the 2011 elections, relegating Janez Janša and his SDS to a runner-up position. In what was a textbook episode of political foolhardiness, Janković however failed to win the prime-ministership for himself, paving the way for Janša 2.0 government. From there on, things only went downhill for Positive Slovenia which has ceased to be a forced to be reckoned with just as fast as it became one.
Continue reading WWZJD (What Will Zoran Janković Do)
Parliamentary election in Slovenia will be held on 3 June. Such was the decision of President of the Republic Borut Pahor last Saturday when he, flanked by his senior advisers, signed the order on dissolution of the parliament and setting the election date. With this the game is now officially afoot. But little in the political dynamic of Muddy Hollows will change in practice as parties and politicians have been on an election footing since middle of the winter, or at the very least since Prime Minister Miro Cerar submitted his surprise resignation and lit a fire under everyone’s asses.
Projected distribution of seats by Volilna napoved poll aggregator, where one can fool around with fantasy coalitions.
While much ink had been spilt over how Slovenia is yet again facing early elections, the date Pahor chose makes this now a moot point. For while it is technically true that elections are being called because of the parliament’s inability/unwillingness to appoint a new prime minister following Cerar’s surprise resignation, election on 3 June also fall within the constitutionally mandated “no sooner than two months and no later than fifteen days before the expiry of four years from the date of the first session of the previous National Assembly” (Article 81) which for all intents and purposes makes this a regular election. Which further proves the point of just how well timed Cerar’s resignation was. Maximum effect with minimum sacrifice.
Continue reading The Game’s Afoot. Again.
In what was not an entirely expected turn of events, the parliament yesterday unanimously adopted the committee report on the TEŠ 6 (Tower Six of Šoštanj coal power plant) corruption case. In addition, the parliament also voted to approve a virtually unprecedented move to report to the police the suspicion of gross negligence in execution of public office, a criminal offence carrying up to three-year prison sentence (Article 258 of the Penal Code).
TEŠ 6 (photo by yours truly)
The report concludes that the whole project was tailored to the needs of the coal lobby with specific MPs acting as stooges and pushing its agenda. The document blames every government from 2004 until 2012 for being needlessly careless and allowing the project to balloon and eventually derail. But while there is plenty of blame to go around, the report singles out and pins the largest share of the blame on then-PM Borut Pahor, his finance minister Franci Križanič and economy minister Matej Lahovnik for either actively looking the other way (Pahor) or even facilitating corruption (Križanič, Lahovnik) when it was already obvious the whole thing was going tits-up but disaster could still have been prevented.
Continue reading Parliament Reports President Pahor To Prosecution Over TEŠ 6
In a completely predictable (and, indeed, predicted) turn of events the much-hyped initiative to recognise Palestine by Slovenian foreign minister Karl Erjavec unceremoniously petered out earlier today as the parliamentary committee on foreign affairs failed to vote on the motion, thus freezing the entire process and for all intents and purposes killing it.
Continue reading Notes On Slovenian Recognition of Palestine (Part 3)
Shocking journalists around
the world Europe who after more than a decade again had to struggle with the difference between Slovenia and Slovakia, prime ministers of both countries tendered their resignations yesterday within hours of each other. Pengovsky being pengovsky, however, we’ll skip Slovenia Slovakia and just do Muddy Hollows where Miro Cerar resigned on the heels of a court annulment of results of the referendum of the second line of the Koper-Divača railway.
…with apologies to Kiefer Sutherland
The gist of it is that while the government won the vote back in September of last year, it failed to win the constitutional challenge of the result, owing to some very weird and novel interpretations of the constitution and referendum legislation. Be that as it may, the Supreme Court, following the decision of the Constitutional Court, decided that the campaign was not fair (specifically, the government’s role in it) hence the result is invalidated and the vote should be repeated. However, there’s more to that than meets the eye.
Continue reading Designated Survivor: Slovenian Edition