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Matej Tonin. Foto: BoBo
Matej Tonin
When the president of the party, which placed 6th, became the president of the parliament, Slovenian politics, the left and the right one, is taking the first step. The question facing Šarec and Janša is: in which direction? Foto: BoBo

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Taking the first step – Matej Tonin (NSi) is the new president of the parliament

22. June 2018 ob 22:16
Ljubljana - MMC RTV SLO

This political changeover, which occurred during the first election session, appears to be absurd. How is it possible that the president of the party, which we all thought is the biggest loser of this year's elections, is now the president of the parliament? As a reminder: Matej Tonin even offered to resign when Nsi secured only seven seats in the parliament, although he predicted at least 10 of those.

This is only one in the series of political changes that can be expected before a new coalition is formed. NSi as the head of the parliament suits everyone. It is certainly suitable for Janez Janša because Tonin's party is the only reliable partner in a possible far-right coalition. Predictions how Marjan Šarec cleared the path for SDS yesterday, are more than justified, however, the story on the centre-left is not over yet.

Marjan Šarec doesn't have a government majority. All five allies have 43 votes. Šarec, therefore, needs the support of another party, because he is not willing to collaborate with SDS and SNS, therefore he needs a vote from NSi or Levica. With this support, LMŠ and other potential partners have clearly shown that they want NSi in the government and that Levica stays in the opposition.

It seems as some kind of inseparable political company, although a closer look reveals this is not the case. Šarec, Miro Cerar and also Dejan Židan clearly stated during the pre-election that if they had to form a new government, they would want »a moderate right«. Alenka Bratušek and Karl Erjavec, which have not made it to the parliament, and Tonin definitely see eye to eye.

However, the troubles have only just begun. How to make a government out of this colorful gang, which includes two former prime ministers, at least three candidates running for the new economy minister, deadly enemies SMC and SD, and especially NSi, which would be, if changing political sides, caught between a rock and a hard place of its own electoral base and SDS, and how to satisfy all political appetites?

It would be very difficult. That is why all options are opened at this point. The biggest obstacle is certainly going to be the fact, that parties with similar political agendas do not even slightly trust each other. Even worse, there is no undisputed political authority that could end resentments that have been spiraling for a very long time, conflicts of interest and competitiveness. On the other side, after fighting many political battles, there is Janez Janša waiting in the slipstream for his second chance, because – if Šarec doesn't succeed, there will be a third round.

When the president of the party, which placed 6th, became the president of the parliament, Slovenian politics, the left and the right one, is taking the first step. The question facing Šarec and Janša is: in which direction?

Tanja Starič, Radio Slovenija, translated by K. Sm.
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