Talks with the President on a date for early national parliamentary elections “should start tomorrow”, Boiko Borissov, leader of centre-right opposition GERB, said in a response to a proposal by Movement for Rights and Freedoms leader Lyutvi Mestan for ahead-of-term elections to be held at the end of November or beginning of December.
Among the main reasons that Borissov underlined for the urgency was the current government’s plan for a three billion leva bond issue.
Borissov has repeatedly warned of the risks of the government’s borrowing plan, criticising the Bulgarian Socialist Party for leading the country towards financial catastrophe while the government also has left unclear the purpose of the borrowing.
The GERB leader, who was prime minister of Bulgaria from July 2009 to March 2013, said that apparently Mestan was aware that it was not logical for the party that had won every election that it had contested so far, including the two most recent Bulgarian and European Parliament elections, to not be in government.
Borissov said that the BSP wanted to stay in power at any cost, Volen Siderov’s ultra-nationalist far-right Ataka wanted to stay in the National Assembly at any price (polls suggest it has no chance of winning seats at a new parliamentary elections, as Ataka won none in the European Parliament vote) while the MRF did not want to be dragged into the gutter by these two parties.
BSP leader Sergei Stanishev had by mid-afternoon of June 5 not commented. Yanaki Stoilov, whose comment on the Mestan statements was posted on the BSP website, said that Stanishev was in the country and had “political commitments”.
Stoilov said that it was not difficult to discuss different political timeframes “as a real possibility” but added that as the holder of the mandate to govern, the BSP had another important responsibility, which was to come up with specific tasks for the government, for these to be discussed, and if accepted, be used to determine what the lifespan of the government should be.
He said that the goal was to achieve stability, but this would be done through the implementation of specific commitments. “These are related to the implementation of several industrial projects, changing the method of distribution of agricultural subsidies in the interest primarily of small and medium-sized producers, stabilisation of the health sector and its social orientation, asserting the position of Bulgaria on South Stream, searching the reserves to improve incomes where this is most needed.”
The BSP did not feel “pressured” by the MRF on the issue, Stoilov said.
Comment from Ataka, the smallest of the four parties in the National Assembly, was not yet forthcoming, but Nikolai Barekov, leader of Bulgaria Without Censorship, which ran fourth out of five parties to win seats in the European Parliament, said that “we want these elections, they are needed for the Bulgarian nation. I will dare to make a correction though. Our date is October 26 and think that this is much more representative date than December 7”.
Radan Kanev, spokesperson for the Reformist Bloc, said that the bloc’s electoral success was the main reason for the fall of the cabinet. The call for the snap elections was an attempt by the mafia to reposition itself appropriately, in the form of the MRF, Kanev said, adding that the BWC party was another product of the mafia.
The Reformist Bloc wanted the appointment of a caretaker government and the holding of elections as soon as possible. The bloc said that Bulgaria needed a centre-right government, and renovations to the current cabinet would solve nothing.
The Reformist Bloc would not serve in a coalition with the MRF and BWC, Kanev said.