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Romania's USR PLUS minority cabinet fails to win parliament's approval

Romania's USR PLUS minority cabinet fails to win parliament's approval Source: USR PLUS

BUCHAREST (Romania), October 20 (SeeNews) - Romania's prime minister-designate and USR PLUS party leader Dacian Ciolos failed to win approval for his minority cabinet in parliament on Wednesday, the outcome of the vote showed.

Of 343 lawmakers present, 88 voted for the Ciolos minority government, according to the official results of the vote communicated by parliament. The voting was aired live by Romanian broadcasters.

In order to pass, the government needed to be backed by at least 234 members of the 466-seat parliament.

Some of the ministers who had been members of the former coalition cabinet comprising National Liberal Party (PNL), USR PLUS and Democratic Alliance of Hungarians in Romania (UDMR) were also on the minority government list proposed by Ciolos. On Tuesday, all proposed ministers failed to obtain a positive assessment during hearings by special parliamentary committees.

USR PLUS leader again nominated Stelian Ion for justice minister, Claudiu Nasui as economy minister, Cristian Ghinea for the EU Funds portfolio, Catalin Drula for the transport ministry and Ioana Mihaila for the health ministry. For the finance ministry, USR PLUS proposed Dragos Pislaru.

If parliament refuses to endorse a possible second nominee for prime minister, Romanian president Klaus Iohannis can dissolve parliament and call early elections.

On October 11, Iohannis tasked Ciolos with forming a government after the Liberal cabinet led by Florin Citu lost a no-confidence vote in parliament requested by opposition left-wing Social Democrat Party (PSD) and backed by USR PLUS and far-right Alliance for the Union of Romanians (AUR)..

PSD filed the censure motion on September 28, following a Constitutional Court decision acknowledging the existence of a legal conflict between parliament and the government on another motion against the Liberal government filed by USR PLUS and AUR on September 3, after Citu dismissed justice minister Stelian Ion. Four days later all five USR PLUS ministers in Citu's coalition cabinet, which also included UDMR representatives, resigned.

PNL and USR PLUS hold 134 and 80 seats in parliament, respectively, PSD has 157, AUR controls 43, while UDMR holds 29. The remaining seats are held by 18 MPs representing minorities, and 5 independents.

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