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Monday, July 4, 2022

The project Povežimo Slovenijo (Connect Slovenia) is creating a new middle pole in Slovenian politics

By: Sara Rančigaj / Nova24tv

The Povežimo Slovenijo movement, which unites five political parties that want to run together in the elections, is growing every day on the Slovenian political stage. The parties SLS, NLS, GAS, SMC and the Zeleni Slovenije want to create a policy in the Slovenian political space that would be central and act as a third connecting pillar, changing the culture of dialogue in the National Assembly and setting ideological topics aside and focusing on development potential of Slovenia. “The key goal in the word ‘connect Slovenia’ is at the same time the word, slogan, content and programme. We have to find a way to be able to talk to each other in different ways,” said SLS President Marjan Podobnik.

On Monday, it also officially became clear that the new movement Povežimo Slovenijo is entering the political scene, which is becoming a very serious player that will have a significant impact on the future government. A meeting was held in Beltinci, during which the main party presidents of the initiative Alojz Kovšca, Andrej Čuš, Zdravko Počivalšek, Marjan Podobnik and Franc Kangler with businessmen, mayors, farmers, schoolchildren and other members and sympathisers supported the networking activities.

The talks also focused on the appointment of a joint list, which, if successful in the elections, will be able to solve the accumulated problems of agriculture, education, health and other challenges highlighted by those present. For a long time, the movement was not detected in public opinion polls, but according to the latest Parsifal polls, despite the not yet fully formed Povežimo Slovenijo list, it would cross the parliamentary threshold and receive somewhere between six and eight seats.

The president of the New People’s Party, Kangler, emphasises that he is fighting for justice and truth, for a fair and just Slovenia. “In recent years, we have witnessed a great injustice done to people. Many have not found their truth and their rights neither in the courts nor in society. I think that the time has come, given the circumstances of social and political life in Slovenia, for those of us who are responsible for the future of Slovenia to show that we can and want to, regardless of which party we come from, to connect all those people who they think, they work honestly, who care about Slovenia and who want a fair and honest Slovenia,” said Kangler.

Podobnik, who does not see himself as a future Prime Minister, is convinced that everyone present in this coalition and on the joint Povežimo Slovenijo list will prove that they do not exclude like the KUL members, but that they connect and unite people. SLS President Podobnik emphasises that their goal is to run in the elections with a reputable and competent candidate in such a way that their candidate will be the one who will be the holder of the future government and will invite both the right and the left to participate. “It is crucial that we simply show this third way of cooperation,” explained Podobnik, who emphasised that they are ready to cooperate or merge with another party.

One of the candidates could be, for example, the list of Aleksandra Pivec Naša dežela, but the latter is determined to run in the elections independently.

According to Podobnik, it is clear to people where the main problems come from when we talk about exclusion and some consciously provoke that everyone is equally guilty. “We know that not everyone is equally guilty, we know where the main problem is. Nevertheless, if we do not show this third path, of which the key goal is in the word ‘connect Slovenia’, which is the word, slogan, content and programme at the same time. We need to find a way for those different to be able to talk to each other,” he added, explaining that they will be able to look for successful solutions in the future and he believes that they will also be successful.

The project Povežimo Slovenijo as a bridge between the left and right poles

According to the leader of the SMC parliamentary group, Perič, the story of their project is developing very quickly, while everyone is receiving positive responses on the ground from various parts of Slovenia and the political space. “Because we want to fill this gap, which was created on the one hand between the centre-right parties and on the other hand with the left, which we see acting in the political space very aggressively. In short, we want to build a bridge between these two poles, we want to be a third pillar that will be able to look a little to the left and a little to the right. And here is our added value,” he explained, adding that the project is based on three pillars: liberal, popular and green, which are extremely important components that complement each other.

In the project, they are happy to be able to cooperate with stakeholders who have significantly influenced the development of the Slovenian economy and say no to various radicalisms, as the latter suffocates Slovenia. “And that limits us in this connection in order to be more successful as a country,” Perič added. According to the president of GAS and the president of the National Council, Kovšca, Slovenia is artificially divided into left and right. “This is actually an artificial division backed by the mainstream media and those who pull their economic interests from behind the scenes outside of politics,” he explained. The guarantee of their thinking is not oriented in the sense of being a supporter of one or another bloc, but that as very different they have managed to overcome the differences that are already perfectly clear and obvious between them.

They want to see a better culture of dialogue in the National Assembly

Kovšca believes that a new culture of dialogue could be introduced in the National Assembly, which would be a sufficient guarantee for Slovenia to succeed. “There are no friends and enemies in politics, there are allies and opponents in politics. There is no need to destroy or personally discredit anyone. It is important to compete with solutions,” Kovšca added. The latter currently does not see the situation in politics as a competition between parties, but as a destruction of parties against each other. “We absolutely oppose such actions of Slovenian politics.”

The president of the Zeleni Slovenije party, Čuš, emphasises that they do not belong to either the left or the right party, while about two thirds of their members are in the centre-left. “On the other hand, we all need to take a step back to take two steps forward /…/ we simply want to compile a very good list of candidates for the National Assembly, and I dare say that in addition to the strongest SDS and SD, the best candidate list will be in the next elections,” explained Čuš. As he explains, the candidate for Prime Minister has not been selected yet, as they still have time to talk about the candidate. “I hope that after December 4th, when we will be together and have a unification congress of SMC and GAS, that this will get some new dynamics and dimension.”

They want to formulate a policy that would put aside ideological topics and focus on the development potential of Slovenia

Podobnik is convinced that three equal political blocs will be formed in the next elections. “I believe that our connection, which will be further strengthened /…/ and will be an extremely strong group. I believe that we will be that connecting story with our candidate for Prime Minster,” he explained. He himself wants it to be similar to Switzerland, with centre-left and centre-right parties forming a unifying Slovene government together and agreeing to put ideological issues aside in the next period so that Slovenia’s development potentials can be exploited.

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