Talossans greeted the preliminary election results with considerable surprise. For the first time in many years, there was neither a clear victor nor an established coalition in place. Even more confusingly, the rise of multiple new parties coupled with a seismic change in the makeup of the Senate has left many in the nation wondering what the shape of things to come will be.
It is clear that the RUMP will remain the nation's largest party by far. The preliminary results, later slightly amended, show that party holding 79 out of the total 200 Cosa seats. The party may be unable to leverage this dominance into any representation in a forthcoming government, however, as the ruling MRPT-ZRT coalition appear intent on retaining power. Those two parties have only obtained 44 seats and 31 seats, respectively, however, dropping sharply from their January totals. This means that any continuation of their coalition would come short of majority support. And even more confusingly, the addition of the LIB would still be insufficient to form a majority, as that new party achieved 19 seats.
An MRPT-ZRT-LIB coalition would still represent only 94 seats in the Cosa.
These difficult numbers mean that the only path to a majority for the ruling MRPT-ZRT lies in the addition of not just the LIB, but also a fourth partner - most likely in the PP, whose 1 3 seats would give a prospective coalition a narrow but workable 1 07-seat majority. With the aggregate support of the TWP's single vote and the seats brought by any agreeable PC members from their total of 1 2, then, there is a possible path forward for the current government.
Should the ruling coalition be unable to cobble together this array of people and parties, the RUMP may have a chance to ally with one of them instead, ousting the current government. Unfortunately for the RUMP, a serious disagreement with the MRPT may have hobbled the RUMP from even before the election was concluded.
According to the public dispute between the RUMP party leader (this reporter) and the MRPT leader, Lüc da Schir, the two leaders had come to an agreement on a future coalition several days before the results were published. While the exact terms of the coalition were not disclosed publicly, it appears that there was a deal in place. After the election ended, however, and it was revealed that the RUMP had lost very nearly the same percentage of seats as the MRPT, the deal fell apart. The accounts of the two party leaders differ as to whether or not the agreement was intended to be binding. Da Schir protested on Wittenberg that he was only ever speaking for himself, not his party, during the negotiation, stating, "I can not take any decision without a vote from my party, and can not sign any deal without my party's approval, as per the MRPT's constitution." The RUMP leader, on the other hand, declared that he had repeatedly and clearly asked for assurances that da Schir could speak for his party, pointing out that he would have had no reason to negotiate with someone who was unable to actually agree on the terms of a deal. He stated in reply to da Schir, "You assured me that you could agree on terms and that we could work together. You certainly also took care to say that there would be a vote, but you also said that wouldn't be a problem. I took particular care on this point, remember - I wanted to know that you could actually agree on something and that your leadership mattered. And you were either misleading me then, on purpose, or you didn't actually fight hard to hold up your end, later, and broke your word then."
Regardless of whether or not the coalition government will continue or if the RUMP will find a partner instead, the changes in the Senate indicate serious shifts are afoot in Talossan politics. The narrow defeat of RUMP ally Sir Mick Preston in Maritiimi-Maxhestic by current Attorney-General and MRPT affiliate Magniloqueu Épiqeu da Lhiun and the loss of Sir Trotxâ Betiñéir to Eðo Grischun in Vuode, coupled with the arrival of unopposed Lüc da Schir in Benito, means that a Senate that was previously a conservative house has now swung around to a dramatically progressive one. The presence of these incoming progressives, joined with Senator Dame Miestrâ Schivâ of Fiôvâ, Senator Munditenens Tresplet of Maricopa, and Senator Glüc da Dhi of Cézembre (the current Seneschal), means that the days of a deliberative upper house of the legislature may well be in the past.
Should the current government continue, there will be serious changes even beyond the addition of new coalition partners. Seneschal da Dhi has already stated his intention to step down, meaning that the likely new Seneschal would be the young new Senator da Schir, current Minister of Stuff, who would possibly be the youngest Talossan ever to serve in that office. Da Schir was not able to accomplish anything during the previous term in his Ministry, but the size of the MRPT is probably enough to overcome that deficit and allow him to replace the retiring Seneschal. However, the government was harshly criticized for its lack of action this past term, and so the other coalition partners might be wary of placing a relatively inactive figure in the most important position. Interestingly, the ZRT's Schivâ has been particularly outspoken about the need for an active Seneschal, making it a central point of their platform. This fact, combined with the otherwise quiet ranks of the ZRT, a party with few active legislators, means that Schivâ might be able to trade away other advantages in order to obtain the office of Seneschal.
For right now, at least, no one can say for sure what the
future holds for the country. Not even the election results have been certified, although the Secretary of State has assured the nation that further alterations to the totals are unlikely. All Talossans can only wait and see.
Home » Davinescu » elections » Issue #13 » "Election Concludes with No Clear Victor; Multiple Possible Coalitions; Seismic Senate Shift; Govt. Unchanged?" by Sir Alexandreu Davinescu