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Artūras Paulauskas

Political asylum for Arturas Paulauskas, by L. Peceliuniene

Artūras Paulauskas 24%


A merger of parties is a phenomenon that not only isn’t new but is even welcome. However, the Arturas Paulauskas-led New Union’s nestling under Viktor Uspaskich’s Labour Party’s wing is worth special attention. Maybe this is even an instance of special cynicism, Lina Peceliuniene wrote in Delfi.lt on 11 April.

Now, one can only sympathise with Arturas Paulauskas. This year, his party even failed at the Vilnius municipal elections. This is a stark contrast to the former prosecutor general’s skyrocketing political career he started back in 1998. Even the then President Algirdas Brazauskas declared him the successor and Arturas Paulauskas was within an ace of becoming the next president. Caught up in the quick turn of events, Paulauskas founded his own party. In the parliamentary elections of 2000, he pretentiously made his way to the government with the pledge of new politics.

Valdas Adamkus himself offered patronage to the new political structure formed by three parties (liberals, centrists and the New Union). It was promised that the new politics would be superior to the old politics (that of the predecessors of Conservatives and Social Democrats). It would be fair, economically viable and without unpleasantries.

True, several years later, when unpleasantries brought the new politics to a hopeless collapse, the then President Valdas Adamkus’ aide, Darius Kuolys, tried explaining the real reasons behind Adamkus’ patronage of Paulauskas. The New Union had already won the municipal elections of 1999 and threatened to move to the top of political power with populist slogans as: We shall take money from national defence and give it to teachers. Such promises posed the risk that Lithuania would lose its chance of joining NATO. Adamkus tried keeping Paulauskas on . leash and steering him towards a state mentality.





Read full article: www.lithuaniatribune.com


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