Bulgarian Nationalist Chief Personally Secured Govt Vote
The needed quorum of 121 Members of the Bulgarian Parliament in the crucial Wednesday vote on the new Cabinet has been provided in person by the leader of the far-right nationalist Ataka party, Volen Siderov.
Four parties overcame the 4% threshold to win seats in the May 12 general elections are: the formerly-ruling center-right Citizens for European Development of Bulgaria party, GERB, the Bulgarian Socialist party BSP, the liberal ethnic Turkish Movement for Rights and Freedoms, DPS, and their self-proclaimed arch enemies – Ataka (Attack).
GERB narrowly won the election, but was unable to form a government, because Ataka, BSP and DPS all declared that they would not negotiate with or support the former rulers.
According to the final count, DPS and BSP together have 120 seats in the 240-seat unicameral Parliament, making Ataka, with 23 MPs, the kingmaker in the 42nd General Assembly as GERB has 97 MPs.
Bulgarian President Rosen Plevneliev issued a mandate to the Socialists, after GERB's leader and former PM Boyko Borisov returned the first mandate to the Head of State.
DPS have committed to backing the Socialists' Cabinet proposal.
Ataka kept the suspense going in waiting until Wednesday morning before making any announcement on their stance on the Cabinet bid, but it already emerged that one of their MPs had provided the quorum.
The Cabinet proposal was made Monday by Plamen Oresharski, candidate for Prime Minister, nominated by BSP.
DPS have committed to backing the Socialists' proposal.
Ataka kept the suspense going in waiting until Wednesday morning before making any announcement on their stance on the Cabinet bid.
It did, however, emerge that one Ataka MP registered to vote, and later - that it has been precisely party leader Siderov.
The move came amidst reports that Siderov's right-hand, Ataka MP Desislav Chukolov, had written at 3 am on his Facebook profile the following: "Today Ataka will rescue Bulgaria from years of Turkish yoke."
Had Ataka chosen to not to register for Wednesday's vote, this would have flopped the quorum as it would have been 1 short of the required 121.
Since the quorum of 121 is now a fact, half of these 121 votes plus one will be sufficient to approve the Cabinet proposal.
After it was announced that there is quorum, the MPs from the formerly-ruling center-right Citizens for European Development of Bulgaria, GERB party, and their leader and former PM Boyko Borisov walked out of plenary hall.
Borisov told the media this was a demonstration against the fact Ataka and Siderov are playing kingmakers in the Parliament.
Tuesday evening GERB announced they will be present at Wednesday's sitting, but will not register for the vote, thus jeopardizing the parliamentary quorum.
However, speaking for bTV Tuesday morning, GERB MP, Dimitar Glavchev, hinted they might wait to see what Ataka would do and may vote against instead of not voting at all.
Borisov told journalists in the Parliament his MPs would return to plenary hall later.
The vote came amidst a number of speculations what Siderov MPs will do such as register for the session in order to provide the quorum and then not voting or voting against.
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