"Oglyadach" today writes of 'the needle' seen already between Yushchenko and Tymoshenko during the first few days of the new administration. They are both trying to show one another who is top dog.
E.g. last Thursday when a KabMin session was attended by the President, he sat at the centre of presidium, the premier and VR speaker on either side. He twice drew to Tymoshenko's notice that she had exceeded the time allotted for addressing the meeting according to the 'reglament', by several minutes. He also announced that he intends to attend [and interfere in?] further cabinet meetings.
But she got her own back later. That evening she arrived [demonstrably?] late to the President's 'showcase' press conference, and instead of listening attentively to the 'wise words' of the President, she shameless shuffled pages of documents, which was picked up and seen by the live nationwide TV audience. [Yushchenko himself is notorious for being habitually late for meetings. Some photos of the press confence and cabinet meeting here and here]
Tymoshenko was also later interviewed on the "1+1" TV channel. [Watch it here ] Viewers could immediately compare her communication skills with those of the President - she clearly overshadowed him. [I have posted recently on Yushchenko's PR presentation and rather dreary delivery.]
On Saturday Tymoshenko's again appeared in a television studio - this time that of the first national channel, to speak glowingly of the merits of the recently passed state budget for 2008, and to praise the government, which had only been in existence for ten days.
"Oboz" claim the President and his secretariat are unhappy about Tymoshenko's overall performance, and are even, possibly, in a state of panic. They suggest that she may be deliberately goading the President into sacking her again so that she will not be held responsible for unkept promises. Open confrontation with the President could increase her rating in the future presidential elections.
Other bitter pills for Yushchenko to swallow are the latest opinion polls. The Ukrainian Razumkov centre of economic and political studies reveal Viktor Yushchenko is now trusted by only 17,6% of Ukrainians, whilst Tymoshenko is trusted by 32,6% - her highest rating since April 2005. The same sociological center reports 30,7% of voters consider Tymoshenko to be politician of the year for 2007. Yushchenko's rating was only 6,6%, after Yanukovych on 14,8%. Hearty congratulations for Tymoshenko poured in when she became PM for a second time from the likes of German chancellor Angela Merkel, and French President Nicolas Sarkozi, to the displeasure of the pres.
"Oglyadach" also report that Yushchenko, Tymoshenko, and newly-appointed National Security and Defence Council secretary Raisa Bohatyryova are to meet in the Carpathian mountains where the President normally spends Orthodox Christmas. Maybe they can work out a co-ordinated plan of action.
LEvko thinks that ever since Yushchenko and Tymoshenko started to work together he has treated her shabbily, but as long as she does not dig her stilettoes into the toes of Yushchenko's business friends, they won't fall out just yet.
p.s. Thanks for the comments - they encourage me to continue with the scribbling.