His Majesty King John appointed C. Carlüs Xheraltescù as Seneschal this past week, allowing the new Seneschal to immediately begin appointing ministers and announcing an agenda. The final decision came after extended internal negotiations within the previous coalition government, which will now be entering its third term of office. The merger of the Liberal Congress and the ZRT into the single Free Democratic Alliance made the FDA the single largest member of the coalition by a narrow margin, and this was presumably the pivotal factor that led to previous Seneschal Lüc da Schir stepping down to a new role as Distain.
This change in the leading party caused a cascade of other changes in the ranks of the Government. Senator Munditenens Tresplet will be taking control of the Ministrà del Estericour to replace the new Seneschal, while Senator Dama Miestrâ Schivâ, UrN will no longer be Distain.
Two other changes are unrelated, however: the position of Avocat Xheneral, which has been a source of endless trouble for this Government over its three terms, will be filled by Vit Caçeir, while the Ministreu dels Afaes Utphätseschti will be Breneir Itravilatx.
Sevastáin Pinátsch and Schivâ will continue in their previous roles as Ministreu à Sanavarh da Talossa àls Ultra-Fiovaes Folas and Ministra dal Cúltura, respectively.
No one has been appointed to be Ministreu dal Finançù at this time, although the new Distain has an interim appointment in that position, meaning that former Ministreu dal Finançù and leader of the Progressive Party has been ousted entirely from this Government.
His Majesty has already appointed all the proposed new ministers as requested, placing or continuing them in office, and many of those appointed have begun filling out their staffs. In MinInt, Ministreu Tresplet appointed Nicholas Hayes as Deputy Minister of Interior, Françal Ian Lux as Deputy Minister of Immigration, and M.T. Patritz da Biondeu as Deputy Minister of Home Affairs; in MinFor, Ministreu Itravilatx appointed Ian Plätschisch as Deputy Minister of Foreign Affair, Galen Zavala-Sherby as Ambassador-at large for Humanitarian Affairs and International Development, and Flip Molinar as Ambassador-General for North America.
After appointments, the Government immediately threw its support behind a variety of policies, most of which would be expected by anyone who followed the course of the election. The Seneschal and other party leaders pledged to work to pass the Democratic Amendment currently in the Hopper, to eliminate the King's role as a check against the Ziu's amendment power. Further, the Government pledged to reduce the number of seats in the Cosa and restrict the number of people allowed to participate in that body, in keeping with the new Seneschal's previous efforts to reduce its membership. Other priorities include eliminating the closed provinces rule and changing the catchment rules, both proposals that have been championed by the outgoing Seneschal.
Older proposals are also being revisited with the new and larger coalition majority, in a manner that minority parties might find troubling. It appears that the Wittenberg reform plan that was passed in the past term will be revisited. The current plan, designed as a compromise with the RUMP, calls for the Chancery to provide the hosting for the new Telecomuna boards, but the incoming Seneschal has pledged that the Civil Service will take control of the boards, instead, as he originally wished. Further, the Government has pledged to institute mandatory Cosa lists, a practice that most of the coalition parties favor, but which the minority RUMP and PP parties have not wished to enact. And perhaps most dramatically, the Government has pledged a "constitutional review" of the Organic Law, something for which Schivâ in particular has been agitating for many years. Overall, these pledges show that the coalition is eager to bring its weight to bear on several issues of longstanding importance to its most prominent members.
Other aspects of the offered plan show responsiveness to criticism. The Government was criticized last term for failing to use the thousands of dollars of stamp assets in any way, and is now pledging to offer them for sale once more. Additionally, there is a plan to hold a census, the lack of which imperils the citizenship of numerous citizens and for which the Government came under fire during the past term.
The new Seneschal offered a speech on his appointment, and pointed particularly to his own status as a reviensadeir -- one of the former members of the Republic, who joined with Reunision. Xheraltescù acknowledged the difficulties that had occasionally sprung up in the aftermath, but suggested that his appointment meant that Reunision was complete, stating,
Reviensadeirs can now claim to have fully integrated. For the very first time, a Reviensadeir has been appointed as Seneschal of the Kingdom of Talossa. A (sort of - I prefer an elective monarchy m'self) republican, for the first time in quite some time is our head of government. But I don't want to be Seneschal of Republicans. I've done that already, believe it or not, when I was a wee bit younger, and the political competition wasn't quite so stiff. No, I want to be el Seneschal of all Talossans: whether republican, monarchist, or somewhere in between like me.
As the coalition Government embarks on its third consecutive term, then, there appear to be considerable changes on the horizon, with a majority grouping that is willing to use its power in a more confrontational manner than in the past two terms. Whether or not this is a result of a growing comfort in power or a change in leadership from the MRPT to the FDA is uncertain, but one thing seems sure: considerable discord lies ahead, and everyone concerned hopes for calm tempers and reasonable debate.