Romanian Prime Minister refuses to resign after party withdraws support

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Series Details 15.06.17
Publication Date 15/06/2017
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The coalition government - led by Sorin Grindeanu and comprising social democrats (PSD) and liberals (ALDE) - took office in January 2017 following endorsement by the Parliament and nomination by the country's President.

Shortly after, protests took the streets against plans to decriminalise abouse of power crimes and grant pardons to some convicts. The period of social tension lasted up until the collapse of the government, despite the controversial bill on corruption charges having been removed.

Analysts speculated that the move to oust Mr Grindeanu was spurred by disagreements between him and his party's leader, Liviu Dragnea. The failed corruption legislation would have allowed Mr Dragnea to run for Prime Minister despite being on trial for alleged abuse of power and voter fraud (and fully denied by him).

According to the media sources, Mr Dragnea kept a tight grip on his party and inclusively chose the members appointed to the government led by Sorin Grindeanu. The troubled Prime Minister asked for Mr Dragnea resignation as party leader in exchange for his own resignation from office.Romania's Prime Minister Sorin Grindeanu rejected on 14 June 2017 a call for his resignation, following his own party's decision to withdraw support to the cabinet. The remaining members of the government resigned, while the junior coalition partner also removed its support.

The turmoil was triggered after a meeting of ruling PSD executive committee, which undertook a performance review of the government and concluded it had failed to fulfil the governing programme after six months in office.

The power struggle entered a new round when the leadership of the ruling Social Democrats (PSD) under Liviu Dragnea submitted a no-confidence vote against its own head of government, Sorin Grindeanu. The vote took place on the 21 June 2017.

A total of 241 members of parliament from the PSD and its junior coalition partners ALDE approved the motion to evict Grindeanu from office, more than the 233 votes required. Only seven lawmakers voted against, while all opposition parties abstained.

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