Gobzems booted from KPV LV's Saeima faction as well

Take note – story published 5 years ago

On February 6 former party leader Aldis Gobzems, who is being expelled from his own KPV LV party, has been removed from the party's parliamentary group.

This makes it look like KPV LV is set for a clean break with Gobzems, the party's nominee for PM who was just recently in charge of coalition talks. 

LTV reports that Gobzems was voted out of the party's Saeima faction with nine votes to five, with one member not voting.

"The future will tell whether this has been bad or good. This entire sad saga has unraveled in front of the eyes of the public.

"This conflict, of course, does not make the party's image any better. Yes, ratings have decreased. The faction and the party have to roll up their sleeves and work," KPV LV faction leader Atis Zakatistovs told Latvian Radio.

He also noted that the KPV LV  faction still enjoys a place in government and parliament, one that will allow the party to implement part of its election program. He also said that the situation in the party ranks has calmed down but that "the drama could still continue".

Party leader Artuss Kaimiņš did not hide his happiness over the event. "The faction could not go on like this. The public opinions of the former faction member had gone stratospheric, out of this world. If he's about to create a new political platform, there's no use being a parasite on a different party's shoulders," an irate Kaimiņš said.

Gobzems took to Facebook to present plans for a new political force, having invited fifty people of organizational talents to join him in setting up a new "entity" (veidojums). 

"Continuing preliminary works, I also invite a patriotically minded group of officers to report to me, because you have a backbone and you have courage. Without these qualities, everything will go on as it used to," he wrote.

"Today I feel positively charged indeed. It's completely clear that, together with the Latvian public, which has addressed me very eagerly since yesterday evening, we will create a new, creative, interesting entity. We'll address more than 10,000 people," Gobzems told Latvian Radio. 

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This follows an increasingly public and increasingly nasty row between Gobzems and Kaimiņš, a former actor and talk-show host. The two were once all but inseparable as the pair vowed to fight what they saw as unfair prosecution when Kaimiņš was detained by the Corruption Prevention and Combating Bureau over illegal party financing, with Gobzems, a lawyer, acting as Kaimiņš' sidekick. 

After a very successful run in the election, arguably helped instead of hindered by the anti-corruption squad's arrest, Gobzems would eventually lead a disastrous campaign to become PM, marking his coalition talks with acts of often bizarre brinkmanship and at one point suggesting a "cabinet of experts" from outside of politics, a desperate act that could in no way have found favor had it been put to vote. 

After KPV LV leader Aldis Gobzems' candidacy for Interior Minister was ruled out by Krišjānis Kariņš when New Unity had taken over coalition talks, Kaimiņš publicly asked Kariņš "not to include former ministers and KPV LV representative Gobzems" in the new government, so that talks continue more smoothly.

Gobzems eventually withdrew his candidacy but renounced support for a Kariņš-led government. 

The two would later insult one another as the new government was put to vote in the parliament, with Kaimiņš accusing Gobzems of being power-hungry and Gobzems threatening to leak potentially incriminating info on Kaimiņš. 

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