Bulgaria’s New Parliament Elects Socialist Speaker
Socialist member of parliament and former Bulgarian Minister of Interior Mihail Mikov has been elected speaker of the new Bulgarian Parliament.
Mikov was Interior Minister for part (2008-9) of the term in office of Socialist leader Sergey Stanishev's tripartite coalition cabinet (2005-9), after prior minister Rumen Petkov resigned.
Mihail Mikov's candidacy was approved with the votes of 118 members of parliament, another 97 voted against.
Former ruling GERB party nominated former speaker Tsetska Tsacheva to re-assume the position, but she failed to get the support of other parliamentary parties.
The liberal ethnic Turkish Movement for Rights and Freedoms backed the Socialists' candidacy, while the nationalists Ataka did not vote.
In fact, the nationalists did not even register for the vote, which pushed the needed quorum down from 121 to 109.
Together the Socialists and the Movement have exactly half, 120, of Bulgaria's 240 MPs, following the May 12 general elections.
GERB came out first with a result that gave them 97 MPs, but is finding itself strongly isolated from other parties.
The remaining 23 MP seats have gone for nationalist party Ataka.
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