Romania. In April, the European Commission declared that all EU countries must present national strategies during the year on how Roma are to be integrated and their living conditions improved. According to Countryaah official site, the Romania have worse opportunities in terms of education, health care, housing and access to work, according to the Commission, which identified Romania and Bulgaria as the countries where discrimination is the worst.
The year was marked by continued financial tightening for an already pressed Romanian people. The measures were a prerequisite for Romania to obtain its loans from the International Monetary Fund (IMF), necessary to cover the large budget deficit and eventually remove it.
Among the severely criticized decisions were the halt to pension increases for those who have retired in the last ten years. The protests were met by President Traian Băsescu, arguing that Romania would go bankrupt if the country continued to borrow for pensions and government employees’ salaries. The public servants lost, among other things. holiday allowance and overtime allowance. It was a big disappointment for Romania when in September the country was refused from the EU for membership in the Schengen passport union. Romania, like Bulgaria, had fulfilled the conditions, but two countries vetoed it, Finland and the Netherlands. They considered that the border control of Romania and Bulgaria at the EU’s external border was not effective enough. In Romania, the opposition demanded that the responsible Ministers for Home Affairs,
When King Mikael (Mihai) turned 90 in October, he was invited to speak before the Romanian Parliament. He emphasized, among other things, the need for better political leadership and more democracy, a message that President Băsescu and several ministers boycotted. It was the first time Mikael spoke in Parliament since he was forced to leave the throne in 1947.
NATO membership and right-wing extremism are challenging
The policies pursued by President Constantinescu and the three prime ministers of his time did not differ dramatically from the former, but placed greater emphasis on economic reform and the fight against corruption, while focusing on NATO membership as quickly as possible. Continued closures of large unprofitable jobs led to protests and social unrest. The fight against corruption was not as whole-hearted as it initially seemed, and Romania did not join the first NATO enlargement eastward in 1999, when Poland, the Czech Republic and Hungary joined.
However, during NATO’s war against Yugoslavia (Serbia and Montenegro) later that year, Romania allowed NATO to use the country’s airspace to bomb missions against Yugoslavia to emphasize its commitment to join. The country joined in 2004 in the second NATO enlargement eastward. The period when Constantinescu was president was gradually characterized by growing contradictions between parties that were part of the original coalition.
At the 2000 presidential election, Constantinescu did not run for re-election. Ion Iliescu got the most votes in the first round. His foremost opponent was right-wing extremist Corneliu Vadim Tudor, who received close to 30 percent support. Tudor was compared by many to Austria’s Jörg Haider. He ran an election campaign with strong attacks on the country’s national minorities – Hungarians and Roma – and made his mark with clearly anti-Semitic statements while at the same time raging against criminals and newly empires. In the second round of elections, therefore, Iliescu also received many votes from voters who were very skeptical of Iliescu, both for his communist past before the 1989 revolution, for his role during the revolution and for his disregard for democratic playing field when miners were mobilized against protesters in 1990. Iliescu received 67 percent of the vote, Tudor 33 percent. In the National Assembly election that year, Tudor’s Nationalist Greater Romania Party (PRM) got about 20 percent of the vote.
2004–2014: Contested president, changing party alliances, economic crisis, EU membership
In 2004, it was the last time presidential and parliamentary elections were held at the same time, from then on the presidential term was extended from four to five years. The 2004 presidential election was surprisingly won by Traian Băsescu of the Alliance for Justice and Truth (DA). The alliance consisted of the Democratic Party (PD), from which Băsescu came, and the National Liberal Party (PNL). The other candidate in the second round was Prime Minister Adrian Năstase from the Social Democratic Party (PSD), which had received the most votes in the first round. Băsescu, who himself had a background in the Communist Party and the successor party that was most reform-oriented (PD), made his mark in the election campaign with strong attacks on Communism and corruption. In the parliamentary elections, the Social Democrats, in an alliance with a support party, became the largest in front of the DA Alliance. Nevertheless, the election result led to a coalition government between the two parties in the alliance and some smaller parties. Prime Minister Călin Popescu-Tăriceanu from the National Liberal Party.
One event that during this period was cross-political satisfaction was that Romania became a member of the EU from 1 January 2007. Prior to that, further reforms had been carried out to meet the EU’s political and economic criteria for membership. When membership was a fact, there was a contradiction between the president and the prime minister in full development, linked to several issues. The case was spearheaded in April 2007 when the prime minister dismissed the government members of the Băsescu-friendly Democratic Party and continued as leader of a minority government with parliamentary support from the Social Democrats.
The 2008 election
At the 2008 parliamentary elections, Vadim Tudor’s right-wing party came under the ban and was left without representation. The Social Democrats went back a bit, but still got in the alliance with the small Conservative party 33 percent of the vote. The biggest success was President Băsescu’s party (now called the Democratic-Liberal Party, PDL), which was the largest in parliament. After the election, a coalition government was formed by the Social Democrats (PSD) and the Liberal Democrats (PDL) led by Prime Minister Emil Boc (PDL), who was close to President Băsescu. In the fall of 2009, this government disintegrated.