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The image represents the logo of Save Romania Union. It is a square represented with embossed texture. In the middle, there is an empty space slash and the acronym of the party underneath: USR (Uniunea Salvați România)

Historical data

USR is a political party set up in 2016, having the Save Bucharest Union as its core. At the parliamentary elections in December 2016, USR obtained 8.61% of the total votes, becoming the third political force in the Romanian Parliament. As a result, in the Chamber of Deputies the party obtained 30 mandates, while in the Senate it obtained 13 mandates [Bibliography 1]. Following local elections in June 2016, when Nicusor Dan came second in the race for the Bucharest City Hall, the decision was made to extend the Save the Bucharest Union at a national level. Following consultations with civic organizations and platforms in the country, the process of registering the new party was initiated. First, on August 21st, 2016, USR, USB and Union for Codlea merger congress was held, an action recognized by the judiciary on October 26th, 2016. As a result, the USR was registered by BEC on the list of parties for the parliamentary elections in December 11, 2016 [Bibliography 2].

 

From a doctrinal point of view, USR is defined as a party that aims to overcome the classic left-right separation, considered irrelevant to the challenges that societies will have to manage in the 21st century. Besides, the name “union” reveals the character of an “umbrella party” that aims to ensure a politically correct climate for all kinds of democratic ideological orientations. However, immediately after his election, President Dan Barna declared that USR should be “in the center-right area of Romanian politics, in that area of modernizing pro-European liberalism, which explicitly supports the private initiative that supports economic development” [Bibliography 3].

 

Due to the pressure of time, Nicusor Dan (civilian activist and scientific researcher) was appointed interim president of USR, with a general congress to be summoned after the 2016 parliamentary elections. Following the USR Congress of May 12-14, 2017, Nicuşor Dan was elected president. A few months later, in the context of public debate on family redefinition through a referendum, USR made the decision to consult all its members to adopt a public position on the issue. Nicusor Dan opposed such an approach, which is why he resigned from his position as president of USR, also renouncing his membership. On October 28th, 2017, following an Extraordinary Congress of USR, Dan Barna, deputy of Sibiu, was elected as president.

 

In March 2018, the USR decided to support the civic initiative “No Criminals in Public Functions” [Bibliography 4], which gathered around 1 million signatures necessary to trigger the revision of the Constitution. Thus, if the procedure is completed, the access to public positions of persons convicted of premeditated corruption will be forbidden. In a premiere for Romanian politics, USR began in September 2018 the nomination procedure for candidates for the European Parliamentary elections in 2019. According to it, the order of the USR candidates will be determined by secret electronic vote of party members [Bibliography 5]. Through such initiatives, USR affirms itself as a party that promotes integrity, honesty, meritocracy and transparency in Romanian politics.

Bibliography

  1. See USR Parliamentary Group Chamber of Deputies (http://www.cdep.ro/pls/parlam/structura2015.gp?idl=1&idg=3) and Senate (https://www.senat.ro/ComponentaGrupuri.aspx?Zi&GrupID=d89d8ddc-cc77-4444-864c-8637a3227dd3), [ 25 November 2018.
  2. „Tribunalul București a decis înregistrarea fuziunii dintre USB și USR”, 26 October 2016, available at https://www.hotnews.ro/stiri-politic-21377680-tribunalul-bucuresti-decis-inregistrarea-registrul-partidelor-fuziunii-dintre-usb-usr.htm[25 November 2018].
  3. Audio interview with Dan Barna, RFI, 30 October 2017, available at  https://www.rfi.ro/invitatul-diminetii-98880-dan-barna-usr-congres[25 October 2018].
  4. USR începe strângerea de semnături pentru campania „Fără Penali în Funcții Publice”, 29 March 2018, available at https://farapenaliinfunctiipublice.ro/comunicate-de-presa/usr-incepe-strangerea-de-semnaturi[25 November 2018].
  5. „Lista candidaților la europarlamentare, stabilită prin votul tuturor membrilor”, 24 September 2018, available at  https://www.hotnews.ro/stiri-politic-22718477-usr-lista-candida-ilor-europarlamentare-stabilit-prin-votul-tuturor-membrilor-clotilde-armand-cristian-ghinea-printre-nscri.htm[25 November 2018].

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