EP elections in Latvia have passed silently. The most attention was taken by local municipal elections and especially of the intrigue who is going to be the next mayor of Riga city.
We have elected eight candidates from six different parties. Latvia has not been surprisingly different from the rest of EU in selection of their candidates. There are more centric right and right wing representatives and less leftist ones. However this division cannot be directly applied to Latvia`s parties, because their political beliefs and belonging are usually presented only on paper but not in actions. Surprisingly that some of the parties were trying to avoid of being a part of socialist party groups in EP and tried to choose something rather fitting to their actions on the liberal side. Luckily EP is not tolerating such irresponsibility. Out of these facts are rising a discussion whether Latvia`s politicians at all are having political beliefs and viewpoint or they are just personalities we are voting for. Unfortunately seems that voting still is followed by personality preference.
Noteworthy that Latvia`s citizens have elected to be EP deputy the only person who has ever been imprisoned for political crimes towards our country (i already mentioned him in my first blog post here). He was placed as the first candidate on the list of so called ethnically Russian speaking party. However during all the campaign he almost never joined political discussions and was published in election materials. It means that his election was rather coincidence of voters negligence than purposeful choice. On the other hand it was a direct choice anyways. So, i have to admit and swallow this lump in my throat that both Latvians and Russians were voting for him and the party representing him.
Another interesting fact that altogether there are elected three so called Russian speaking deputies in EP, comparing to just one in the previous elections. The same trait can be observed in local municipal elections. (Apparently the wisdom or discrimination of pre election political advertisements has left impact. See, previous post.) It means that these parties have gained more support and confidence in Latvia`s political system, which leads to changes. Changes can be positive as Russian speaking minorities are gaining higher representation. On the other hand, it brings up the historical heritage and fear from Russia thus extreme nationalism might rise and is rising again. In the end no peaceful solution for co-existing and trust is yet found.
I am grateful to say that at least for some Latvia`s EP deputies i don’t have to be embarrassed. It seems that for them European issues are close to their heart and interests. They seem challenged and exited to be there to create and discuss policies in a broader level, while for others its an international vocation, a political platform to solve national questions or a language school.
Now the further commissioner position will be an open discussion for Latvia. Unfortunately, public discussion about this topic will be overshadowed by economical disasters of the country.