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Right-winger wins in Lithuania

Discussion in 'Issues Around the World' started by Advocat, Jan 5, 2003.

  1. Advocat

    Advocat Viral Memes a Speciality Staff Member

    Life gets interesting for the EU and Lithuania:

    Right-winger wins in Lithuania
    http://europe.cnn.com/2003/WORLD/europe/01/05/lithuania.election.reut/

    Right-wing challenger Rolandas Paksas scored an upset victory in Lithuania's presidential runoff election on Sunday, unseating the incumbent by a wide margin that may unsettle leaders of the European Union.

    Paksas, a former prime minister, told Reuters he rejected suggestions he is a populist radical in the mould of France's Jean-Marie Le Pen, though some critics say he could pose a risk to Lithuania's hopes of joining the EU next year.
     
  2. jamming

    jamming Banned

    Pakas, may not care to join the EU next year. Many of the Baltic Republics are Rightly concerned about giving up their hard won soverignty.
     
  3. ethics

    ethics Pomp-Dumpster Staff Member

    I wonder what Leopoldo thinks of this?
     
  4. Leopoldo Niilus

    Leopoldo Niilus Registered User

    In regard to the Lithuanian presidential elections, I would still need some time to gather more info and reactions, including on the Baltic level.

    Offhand I would say that the CNN story strikes me as unduly alarmistic and even tendentious. It seems to lean backward to prove that the newly elected Lituanian president signifies a clear possibility of Lithuania not joining the European Union (EU). At the same time, it is not clear about whether this would happen because the current EU members would reject the presidents rightist/populist views, or whether he himself would press for Lithuania not joining.

    In any case, there is a referendum in Lithuania on the joining of the EU in May. That is, soon enough well see.

    A more balanced story of the Lithuanian elections can be found in BBC

    http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/europe/2630093.stm

    The EU referendum in Estonia will be held in September. (Just now I dont remember Latvias date). From among the Baltic States, Estonia probably has the highest number of euro-skeptics, although as of late the balance has somewhat shifted and polls now show more than 50 per cent in favor of joining the EU.

    Personally I still need to be convinced about the arguments against joining the EU. One finds oneself in the company of really strange bedfellows. In the case of Estonia, for example, a highly fundamentalist Christian party and a barely disguised neo-communist one. Neither of the two has yet obtained enough votes to enter the parliament. Well have to see what happens in the parliamentarian elections in March.

    Funnily, or perhaps not all that funnily, a higher number of Russian-speakers in Estonia seem to be in favor of joining the EU than the Estonian aborigines proper.

    I also need to be convinced about this whole hullabaloo of losing sovereignty. I dont think it is a very bright idea to conceive of the Baltic States as a series of Switzerlands along the Russian border. Even Switzerland will still have to decide. And not everyone can declare itself a Switzerland. :)

    Ill keep an eye on Lithuania.

    Yours truly

    Leopoldo
     
  5. ethics

    ethics Pomp-Dumpster Staff Member

    Thanks Leopoldo.

    It SEEMED alarmist, with only a few reasons to label him right wing and to me, it was like, "and then?"

    Thanks for the information. :)
     
  6. Sierra Mike

    Sierra Mike The Dude Abides Staff Member

    Well, if nothing else, Lithuania has finally gotten into the press. :haha:

    SM
     
  7. Leopoldo Niilus

    Leopoldo Niilus Registered User

    Much ado about nothing

    Much ado about nothing

    As promised, I have followed up the Lithuanian presidential elections. It seems that confusion arose, at least in this thread, through the Reuter story picked up by CNN, a story more than weird, almost wild. Probably from a pen of an excitable journalist. :)

    It is true that the electoral outcome at this second voting was not expected. At least not by the political elite who was absolutely sure that Adamkus would win. Especially as Rolandas Paksas seemed to have no visible support or supporters. In the light of that, Adamkus AND the political elite lowered their guard and became sloven in their electoral campaign. Sic transit gloria mundi.

    Still, Paksas is not quite unknown - chap has been prime minister and mayor of Vilnius. I havent seen more accusations of far right or comparisons to Le Pen. Some have rather accused him of being a liberal (in the European sense). There are even those who have accused him of Communist past. He probably is a bit of a maverick. As president he does not matter too much in Latvias day-to-day political business. These shots are called by the prime minister. The president has some influence over foreign policy. But there Paksas has reiterated his support to the current foreign policy of Lithuania: support to NATO; support to the European Union; support to goodneighbourly relations that is, in regard to Russia. It is believed that Paksas playground most likely will be Lithuanias internal politics.

    To sum it up, nothing really earth shaking has happened in Lithuania.

    As in my earlier post I did not recall the date of the euro-referendum of Latvia, I now pass on to you info about the euro-referendums in the three Baltic States. Some of the data may be very slightly outdated:

    ESTONIA:
    > Referendum: Sept 14
    > Public opinion: Most recent poll shows EU support has jumped to 57
    > percent, while opposition has dipped to 36 percent.
    > Notes: Referendum will be non-binding, with no minimum turnout
    > requirement. No coordinated anti-EU movement, but critical umbrella group
    > could emerge. No contingency plans yet in the event of a 'No' vote.
    > LATVIA:
    > Referendum: September or November
    > Public opinion: 'Yes' vote has risen above 46 percent, with opposition
    > steady at close to 36 percent.
    > Notes: Binding referendum with minimum turnout of at least 50 percent. No
    > anti-EU group, but high potential given strong anti-EU sentiment. Analysts
    > have said a 'No' vote would result in a second referendum to coincide with
    > the next general election, due in 2006.
    > LITHUANIA:
    > Referendum: May or September (decision not expected until after
    > presidential elections in January)
    > Public opinion: 'Yes' camp has grown to about 68 percent, with 'No' vote
    > slipping to 19 percent.
    > Notes: Likely to be binding referendum, with simple majority as long as at
    > least 50 percent of voters take part. Opposition comes mainly from small
    > populist parties; foes are more issue-specific than anti-EU. No bar to
    > holding a second vote in the event of a 'No' win, but wording would
    > probably be revised.

    Leopoldo
     
  8. Robert Harris

    Robert Harris Passed Away Aug. 19, 2006

    Thanks for the research, Leopoldo.

    But -- "To sum it up, nothing really earth shaking has happened in Lithuania."

    Kind iof disappointing. It would be nice to see something exciting from that part of thee world. :)
     
  9. ethics

    ethics Pomp-Dumpster Staff Member

    Yah, what Bob said, thanks for the footwork on this.

    :)
     

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