Ladies and gentlemen, the final convention of the Slovenian Democratic Party in the campaign for the 2022 National Assembly elections took place in Medvode on tuesday.
The entire winning SDS team for the elections to the National Assembly gathered in Medvode, and the main speaker was the President of the Slovenian Democratic Party and the Prime Minister Janez Janša.
The full speech of the SDS president is here:
Janez Janša: We will fight for votes until the polls close and until the last counted vote
We will fight in villages, squares, cities, on stalls, in houses, in blocks of flats, and on social networks. We will fight wherever good people live and work, but they may not be aware that their voice will be decisive this time.
Today, the final convention of the Slovene Democratic Party in the campaign for the 2022 parliamentary elections took place in Medvode. The entire winning SDS team for the elections to the National Assembly gathered in Medvode.
The following is an address by the President of the Slovenian Democratic Party Janez Janša.
The address is not authorised!
Dear comrades-in-arms in the fight for a democratic and free Slovenia, dear Manfred, dear guests, dear Mr. Mayor and above all dear fellow candidates.
The term of office is coming to an end and for the first time since 2008 Slovenia is going to the polls. We endured to the end. We are going to these elections in complete peace. We did everything possible and maybe a little more. Those of you who worked night and day in this term, you know that, and in fact, when I look around this hall, you are all here. An election campaign is underway and if you follow these debates, then you see that the debate is only on the second part of this term. We ran the government for only a good two years. The first two years were led by others, but the opposition is only attacking our results, saying nothing about their own.
We were a little naïve and we expected to go to the regular elections, we will present our results, the opposition that ruled in the first half of the term will present their results and we will compare. Did you see any comparison? Honestly, even in the first half of the term there were some achievements, we could be proud of, but everything is focused only on negativity and criticism. There were some results, but there were also miracles.
Lately, we have been hearing that you can have 6,000 euros a month, but in the end, you get half a million. But that is not all, someone opens a giro account in a bank in another European country and look at it, money flows in there without you knowing it. These are miracles that even Jesus in Cana of Galilee would envy. We are not capable of that, dear friends. We do not work miracles, we do what is possible, sometimes a little more, but we do cannot do miracles.
And here the achievements are not over. There were mandates that we call the mandates of left-wing governments, and look, if you were someone doing long-term care studies at the time, it was very nice of you. 70 million euros was earmarked for long-term care studies, during which time not a single home for the elderly was built from the state budget, and studies were being done. And there was the first, the second, the third version of the Long-Term Care Act, there was a hundredth, but it was still not enough. So, there was another study, and it was the hundredth and first and we got the 126th and then we made the law, and it was passed, and the seniors will have long-term care in the coming years. So, we do not know how to work miracles, but we do what needs to be done in real time, even though we have faced a serious crisis in our half of our term.
When we compare the results or the first and second half of the term, we need to be aware that one of the reasons we are being extremely attacked at this time is that it is almost impossible to read everything, that we have shown the difference. A difference that many do not notice because it is not talked about, so we are doing everything we can to make this difference noticeable, and it is precisely because of the difference that they would like to prevent us from having one full term. Because if we continue at this pace for another full term, then the difference will be so obvious that they can bring in any new face from any dovecote and nothing will help.
Therefore, ladies and gentlemen, let us do our best to make this difference visible. That there will be a visible difference between what is being built in Slovenia today and where the money went before. In recent terms, more money has been spent on non-governmental organisations disguised as para-armies of left-wing parties than on all investments in Slovenian education. Do you know, if I repeat the question for a young colleague, any national achievement? Now they are running a campaign without an open giro account against us, and they know why. The difference is what people see after they feel it and because of that such fear of another full term.
For the government whose term is coming to an end, or half, Slovenia was the whole. Slovenia was a whole, not just Ljubljana. It is right that Ljubljana is developing, but Slovenia is not just Ljubljana, today it is being built all over Slovenia and the difference can be seen, maybe not in those things that are only in development plans, projects, but many shovels are already planted, and many things are becoming a reality.
So, in the last two years, we have proven that there is a government that cares. A government that helps in a crisis. It helps everyone, without double standards. Imagine how successful we would be if there was no harassment. We have adopted ten anti-corona packages, the most compared to any other EU Member State. Well, to be honest, also with the help of one of the opposition parties, the SNS and both MPs of nationality, the others either voted against or abstained. Today, they say, they will repeal this with one law written by civil society.
They say they will repeal everything that is harmful to them and obviously everything they voted against is harmful. Look at what they voted against and grab your wallets. Because this means that it will be necessary to return pensioners’ allowances, tourist vouchers, help for families, students, subsidising waiting for work, covering fixed costs for companies, grants to companies in difficulty, energy voucher… They voted against all this because they said that it is harmful. So, tell people what the first step is that they intend to take. They will say, but maybe we will leave something. But the votes in the National Assembly of the Republic of Slovenia have been announced. We know what they have declared harmful and say they will repeal it. Are we going to let them do that?
We ourselves are too weak, but if we address people these days before the elections and tell them what it is all about, we will be strong enough to prevent them from doing so.
Moreover, during these two years, we have often wondered how the government and the opposition can work together in most European countries, but this is not possible in our country. We offered a partnership for development, they refused, we asked them to help when it was hardest. Nothing worked. Now they say they have proposed a lot, but we have not accepted anything. When we ask what they suggested, they say otherwise. Everything can be different. There were also some good proposals from the opposition that we considered, we included them in the legislation, but this was mostly overheard.
When we talk about cooperation, this is one of the key words, not only for Slovenia, but for the whole planet, the whole world. We are following this tragedy in Ukraine. From our border to the border with Ukraine is less than from our border to Belgrade or Milan. So, it is not far away, it is directly in our neighbourhood, and we wonder how it is possible that this happened, that hundreds of people are dying there, while we are gathering in peace in this hall in the place of Jakob Aljaž. How is it possible that the world did not prevent this? Why was there no more collaboration? And we imagine where we could be today as humanity, if nations cooperated with each other, joined forces to explore space together, we would have been on Mars a long time ago, maybe some other constellation, but so much is invested in protecting each other before others, and this is what Ukraine is about, but it is being forgotten, it is fighting for natural resources, for land, for resources, for iron ore, for silicon, for manganese, for uranium, and so on.
These are the questions that humanity has been asking itself for a long time, these are the questions that gave rise to the EU when the answers were sought. The EU was created as a peace project to prevent what happened in the last century, the First and Second World Wars, from ever happening on the European continent. We believed that we had prevented this forever, but now that we look at what is happening in Ukraine, we wonder if this is true.
If we go back to Slovenia. Imagine, we have progressed in the last 30 years, but imagine where we would be if we were able to participate with different thinking all this time when it comes to key development projects. When we went to the plebiscite on independent Slovenia, our parents said that if we had freedom, democracy, and a market economy all the time, we would be like Switzerland, we could be by the standard, if in all these thirty years we could actually breathe with both wings of the lungs and cooperate. If we achieved reconciliation, if there was no exclusion, if there was no second class, if there were not some who think that they are born to rule, that everything belongs to them, and that others must work for them.
There are many of these reasons and today we will not talk about why there is no more cooperation in the world, why there is no more cooperation in Slovenia. But what we promise is that we will never stop fighting for it. We will fight for more cooperation between nations, both in Europe and beyond, we will fight for EU enlargement, so that a space of stability, peace and freedom will be accessible to nations that are now outside it and therefore endangered because we were too slow here. We will fight for the peaceful coexistence of different cultures, religions, civilisations, and we will not stop fighting for reconciliation in the Slovenian nation, for the cooperation of different thinkers, because if you think the same, cooperation is not necessary. Cooperation comes into play when we think differently, we are different, we have different parties, and we need to cooperate. And it is possible to cooperate. The mandate we are ending is proof of that. When like-minded people threw in the towel and resigned and quarrelled with each other, even though they were like-minded, we connected dissenters and we were able to do it. Despite everything. It is unfortunate that those, conditionally speaking, from the left that were able to work together for the common good, to save lives, the health of people, were even more attacked than we were, they were declared traitors, class enemy. They destroyed DeSUS and SMC. In the end, the party endured and congratulations to Mr. Počivalšek, but there are fewer of them left in the National Assembly than there are ministers in the government, so strong were these attacks and this discrediting and this was taken in the mainstream media for the mainstream, for something extremely normal, not for something that is extreme and what it is.
Ladies and gentlemen, as you well know and as you all feel during the campaign, there is no one among the voters of the Slovenian Democratic Party who does not like Slovenia. Have you met anyone? However, they are not only with us, but they are also with other parties and that is right and so it is appropriate in a democratic society and therefore the time is coming when there will be more cooperation and therefore Slovenia will be able to do more. By 2030, Slovenia will be among the 15 most economically developed countries. At that time, ladies and gentlemen, Slovenians will be able to measure themselves against the first place in the world in terms of quality of life. When we look at the world rankings today, where we are according to the Peace Index, also the Social Equality Index, although this is not always good in terms of development, but according to many other criteria for sustainable development, greenery, forestry, beauty, Slovenia ranks among the first ten countries in the world, in the EU alone, we have great potential and there is no reason to feel second-class, not to see it and not to know how to use it.
We have all the options; we just have to be brave enough. In three decades and some more of independent life, we as a nation and as a community have matured and despite all the difficulties, we have achieved a lot in that time. In a way, this should seem self-evident, but somehow it is not. Everywhere we look, we see headlines where fear, defeatism, nothing will happen, everything will fall apart, let’s be quiet so that no one will notice what we have to suggest, and who we are, let’s be as humble as possible, under the radar, but behold, this time is past. We have three decades of maturation behind us, now we do not need any more experiments, we are Europe as much as others, we are the EU as much as others. We co-decide, our word has weight, the world also knows and appreciates us. There is no room for any second-class. We are raised by our entrepreneurs who are successful on a global scale, so we have record economic growth, employment, we are raised by our scientists, artists, and athletes, we are first in the number of medals at European and world championships per capita, let’s applaud Slovenian athletes. We have many of our compatriots around the world, hundreds of thousands who still have Slovenia in their hearts are our ambassadors, they work for us out of love for the homeland, not because they would benefit, many are willing to return home, to contribute directly to our prosperity, but we still have a long way to go to ensure that conditions are such that they can return.
The young generation to come, you probably see it at home, is fully capable of accepting the digital challenge, nothing lags behind peers from other countries, there is no reason for any feeling of inferiority, so even this much talk about transformation, green, digital, we will handle in a smart way, the wind is very favourable for Slovenia at the moment and how we will be able to cooperate with different thinking people, how widely we will be able to spread our sails will depend on how fast our voyage will be, how fast our search will be for prosperity and happiness.
Previously, Dr Simoniti pointed out one important thing, and I think it needs to be further emphasised. Some have come forward and said this election is the last battle of their generation. This can only be said by someone who defends the past, no one in this country has to fight the last battle, there are elections and there will be elections again in four years, but this year there will be local and presidential ones, it will be full of battles. No one has to fight the last battle, but because the jet has already been set up in this way and because we see the consequences of the unfinished transition – what happened in Russia, how this country threatens European and world peace, hundreds of people are dying – we need to become serious, because these things about the last battle of the generation are said by those who have bloody Putin’s decorations on their chests, which they still have not returned. After all, they are said by those who still have great influence in Slovenia, regardless of democratic institutions in Slovenia.
So, a decision needs to be made and this challenge needs to be accepted. Let’s say we do them a favour. It will really be their last battle, but at the same time it will be our next victory. But this one is not here yet.
We have seen so many polls, good and bad, in the history of the SDS that we could burn and heat the whole of Slovenia for a few days. You win at the elections, and we plan to do that on Sunday, but the situation is close. They always were, except in 2014, when they really won by a big margin because they physically excluded us from the election campaign because they stole our election. Electoral results are always close and often decide a few tens of thousands of votes on who will form the government or who will form it first. We have a battle ahead of us. We will fight for the votes today, we will fight tomorrow, we will fight the day after tomorrow, until the polls close and until the last vote is counted. We will fight in villages, squares, cities, on stalls, in houses, in blocks of flats and on social networks. We will fight wherever good people live and work, but they may not be aware that their voice will be decisive this time. And this time, ladies, and gentlemen, we will not allow rich Ljubljana to beat the rest of Slovenia, because we all deserve equal opportunities. The voice of an honest farmer, worker, student, pensioner anywhere in Slovenia is equal, it is worth just as much, or I will say more than the voice of Friday’s cyclist, because the first ones create, work or have worked and created so that someone can make fun out of them and rides on their blisters.
This difference is obvious. This difference is obvious, and we can change this by making every vote. Because, ladies and gentlemen, I think that there was enough humiliation of Slovenia. Retirees deserve higher and stable pensions; they deserve dignity and intergenerational coexistence. The economy deserves less bureaucracy, it deserves help with the green and digital transition and lower taxes. Workers deserve well-paid jobs. Workers also deserve dignity and earn a thirteenth salary. Young people deserve opportunities to succeed in life. For success in life that does not depend on where they are born. Regardless of where you are born in Slovenia, you have the same right to basic opportunities, but then it is up to you how you will use these opportunities. Mothers deserve an additional retirement age for each child. Slovenia needs joy in life. Dear gathered, we will walk this path. We will ensure Slovenia’s security, stability, and development. Carinthia and Bela krajina, Carinthians and citizens of Bela krajina are you here, do you not finally deserve the final fast road. It could have been built a long time ago if money had been spent where it is created a long time ago. Prekmurje and Maribor and many other places and municipalities and regions along the border deserve better paid jobs so that tens of thousands will not have to go to work in Austria. We can create all this at home. Gorenjska finally deserves a decent regional hospital, and we are building all over Slovenia. We are building this because we have been able to and will continue to build. We invite all people of good will to participate. We invite all parliamentary parties to participate, which will gain the trust of voters in Sunday’s elections.
Ladies and gentlemen, once again, we will fight for the voters today, we will fight tomorrow. We will fight until the last counted and verified ballot, so let’s not forget the controls. There are many of us in the Slovenian Democratic Party, there will be even more of us tomorrow. We will never give up, we will never stop, because ours is a fight for the thing, for Pučnik’s thing, for the homeland, for Slovenia, which is not a stepmother to anyone, but has a flag in colours in which we can all recognise ourselves. This struggle does not end with one generation, this struggle goes from generation to generation, this struggle is as lasting as Slovenia is. We are not defending the past, but we are building the future, so we will win, we will win for Slovenia. I ask you who we will win for. For whom. For Slovenia. For whom. For Slovenia, which is my homeland, God bless Slovenia.