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PASOK 2 and Panos Kammenos’ "Independent Greeks" seriously undermine the two governing parties in Greece

28 February 2012 / 16:02:33  GRReporter
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PASOK disaffiliated deputies are a step away from creating at least one new centre-left political formation. Among them are former ministers Louka Katseli and Harris Kastanidis, who are making the most active efforts to gather supporters and to form a single political proposal.

According to sources, processes in the initiative of other group of disaffiliated members are running at the same time. They are discussing other moves, considering partnership opportunities with other parties and are joining neither Evangelos Venizelos and Andreas Loverdos known as LOVE, nor the political couple Louka Katseli - Harris Kastanidis.

It seems that the struggle to attract large groups of voters who have already said farewell to PASOK and are now turning to the Democratic Left will be severe. According to a large number of the major players in these processes, the move by former PASOK members and the corresponding move by the former New Democracy minister Panos Kammenos to establish his party "Independent Greeks" are actually initiating the fragmentation of the two major parties in the period following the post war dictatorship.

Louka Katseli and Harris Kastanidis’ efforts and attempts of collusion with other former members of PASOK have been constant in recent weeks. So far, former Minister of Employment has preferred the tactics of expressing her disagreement with the second memorandum. Louka Katseli has made it clear that this will be the contents of her political proposal. The main idea is expected to be formed around the notion of improving the economic parameters of the memorandum in order to break the recession. In recent days, she has completely distinguished herself from the steering group of the "new" PASOK not only on economic policy issues but also on strategic issues such as the intention of the party to cooperate with New Democracy after the election, which was expressed by Andreas Loverdos.

Meanwhile, Harris Kastanidis is seeking to coordinate more than twenty-two deputies disaffiliated with PASOK and the nine ones, who were announced to remain outside the party ballots in the coming elections. According to sources, the official launch of the new centre-left formation and its initiatives is expected soon and it will probably coincide with the developments around the election of the new leadership in PASOK. It will be based on the model of leadership in the European social democratic parties. This is a double leadership in which Louka Katseli will chair the party, and Harris Kastanidis – will be the chairman of the parliamentary group. In this sense, the most likely development in the coming days is the formation of a parliamentary group to be announced, which is expected to involve about half of the disaffiliated or potentially disaffiliated members of PASOK.

The intentions of Christos Papoutsis, who until yesterday held the post of Minister of Citizen Protection, remain unknown. He resigned to take part in the battle for leadership of PASOK minutes before the organization "Partisan struggle in the city" to take responsibility for the bomb in the Athenian underground. If he still decides to participate in internal party elections, it is almost certain that some of the disaffiliated deputies will join him, including the former party secretary Mariliza Xenogiannakopoulou.

Meanwhile, New Democracy has partially withdrawn the original call to disaffiliated deputies that they could return to the party bosom if they voted for the regulations regarding the implementation of the second memorandum of financial assistance. Now, party sources are claiming that their return "depends on various factors."

According to the headquarters of Antonis Samaras, "we are talking about 21 different cases." In this way, the party leadership wants to analyze all the actions of deputies, many of whom made various statements in past days. Other sources are saying that New Democracy knows the names of the disaffiliated deputies, who have already started negotiations with other political formations. And despite their public statements, in which they have denied the opportunity of joining another party or the new formation of Panos Kammenos.

Today, he applied for the official registration of the party in the Supreme Court. In a radio interview, he said that despite the request of the people who support him, the party would not involve deputies and individuals who have been in politics over the years, "it is impossible to shut the doors to those who voted against the memorandum. This would mean that we put them in the same position as the traitors, who gave a positive vote and this is not fair."

Yesterday, the ex-governor of Central Macedonia Panagiotis Psomiadis,who has fallen into disgrace for a warrant, established a movement called "Patriotic incitement network " and the capital letters of the abbreviation of the name form the word "homeland". Only a few days ago, he sent a letter to the leader of New Democracy, stressing, "people want a leader who will say the new big "no." According to the politician from Thessaloniki, the new memorandum will not save Greece from bankruptcy and collapse. So far, there is no response to Panagiotis Psomiadis’  move. Commentators believe that it will force New Democracy, LAOS and the Democratic Alliance to restart the counting of their supporters in order to see whether changes in the ratios have occurred.

Tags: PoliticsPASOK 2New DemocracyIndependent GreeksPanos KammenosLouka KatseliPanagiotis Psomiadis
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