Tuesday, March 14, 2006

Political jockeying

In the press conference mentioned by Scott, Pres Yushchenko, when asked about a possible coalition between PR and NSNU in the new parliament, replied: "I'll will be able to give you a reply to this question in 31 days" [i.e. a few days after the elections]. Yushchenko also blamed Tymoshenko for 'discrediting the Orange forces' but didn't want his statements to be considered as electioneering rhetoric. Yesterday Yuriy Yekhnanurov, when asked about coalitions, said: "Lytvyn bloc - yes, BYuT - yes, [Party of] Regions - no."

On the same topic BYuT parliamentary fraction leader Anatoliy Semynoha declared that his party is ready to form a coalition with NSNU and Moroz's Socialists, "[but] only in the event that they [ie BYuT] receive a larger number of votes" in the election on 26th March. He suggested that if a majority of electors support NSNU or other party, then NSNU will not form a coalition with BYuT. "This will be a coalition with Yanukovych...whose main aim will be preservation of power, and not development of the country."

Meanwhile Tymshenko in a <1+1> TV channel appearance on 13th March stated, "[We don't need] compromises with gangs, mafias, and clans, so, who am I to work with - if there is Yanukovych on one side, and Poroshenko on the other? I have only one way out - receive 51% of the vote. Then everything will be OK." She also pointed out to viewers that if they vote for BYuT they will know exactly who the leader is, and if her party gets sufficient votes, who the next PM will be. "People should elect a real person to govern the country, and not 'a cat in a sack' [ie an unknown entity]. [I have written about ambiguous statements made by Yuschenko on this matter previously].

It seems to me Tymoshenko is being quite smart in targetting NSNU voters, saying vote for me and I won't compromise with Yanukovych - vote for NSNU and you can't be sure who you will get. [Whether this will indeed be the case is an entirely different matter, of course. Once the election votes are counted, a fresh pack of playing cards will be called for, and completely new hands dealt and played out.]

Scott is quite correct - Yekhanurov is an asset that NSNU have not exploited anywhere nearly enough in this election campaign. Their hard-hitting TV prog shows they know where the danger lies, but their leadership have not driven this message home in their personal statements, allowing BYuT to appear more true to the ideals of the Maidan. Yekhanurov must maximize his media profile as current [and NSNU's future] PM in the time left if NSNU are to realize the full potential of their party.

p.s. watch a chilling trailer for TV series entitled 'The state of Russia' here
Which way is Ukraine going to turn?

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

The english equivalent of the phrase "cat in a sack" is "pig in a poke". The poke is a sack, and the cat is still a cat-- but it's sold as a pig.