Since no party is expected to gain a majority in Parliament, rumours are getting lauder that grand coalition could be a solution.
Andrej Plenković, the main and so far the only candidate for HDZ president, said today in Split that a “grand coalition” between HDZ and SDP after the September’s elections was neither possible nor necessary at the moment, reports Večernji List on June 30, 2016.
Speaking to reporters on the sidelines of a conference of the European People’s Party, Plenković was asked whether a grand coalition was possible. “No. And, at this time, it is not necessary.” He emphasized that HDZ was open to other coalition arrangements. “I am in contact with a number of colleagues from other parties, and I am open to coalition agreements. I believe that groups set up by the HDZ presidency to conduct these discussions, which are comprised of experienced colleagues, are doing a good job”, said the candidate for HDZ president.
These coalitions, Plenković added, would be agreed in time so that the public and political partners know the position of HDZ. “My position is clear – first of all, there must be a similarity of worldviews, and then of the programme goals as well”, he noted.
Talking about the upcoming elections for party president, he said that all HDZ members could run. “This is a decision of every individual who believes that with their knowledge, experience and work they can give contribution to HDZ in the current situation”, he said.
Speaking at a press conference in Zagreb, SDP presidency member Peđa Grbin also rejected the possibility of a grand coalition with HDZ. “We will go to the polls with our own people. A grand coalition with a party which still has in leading roles people like Culture Minister Zlatko Hasanbegović, and with a party which even now, when they have lost their majority in Parliament, is still making decisions that will bring huge damage to Croatia – how could such a coalition be possible”, said Grbin asked whether there was a possibility of a coalition between SDP and HDZ.
He confirmed that SDP was in discussion with HSS about that party joining the SDP-led coalition. “Negotiations are under way and, when they end, you will be notified”, he said, adding that SDP’s strategy did not depend on events in other parties. Journalists asked him whether SDP was willing to change its strategy if Andrej Plenković becomes the HDZ president. “SDP is preparing its electoral manifesto for the Croatian citizens, and we are not interested in activities of other parties.”
Since polls show that after the early parliamentary elections no one will be able to form the government and that it will be necessary to enter into postelection coalitions, journalists asked Grbin whether SDP was ready to “sacrifice” Zoran Milanović, considering that MOST president Božo Petrov said they did not want to form a coalition with SDP if Milanović remained the party president. Grbin replied that SDP did not comment on polls “when they were bad for SDP, and we will not do it know, when they are excellent”. He added that “Božo Petrov is continuously conducting his campaign and you should ask him about his statements”.