Gobzems nominated for Latvia's PM

Latvia's president Raimonds Vējonis on November 26 nominated the KPV LV party's Aldis Gobzems as Latvia's potential new PM.

Gobzems has been given two weeks to put together a viable coalition, as well as name his desired ministers and cabinet priorities. 

Following news of his nomination, Gobzems told the press that "for all the rest of my life, I will do all I can so that the Latvian people live in prosperity, in peace and so that Latvia blooms."

Gobzems' rival, the Development/For! nominee Artis Pabriks congratulated him with the news and said that a decision will follow soon whether his party will cooperate with KPV LV.

A statement released by the president's office said that the fact Saeima deputies were able to vote in recent weeks to form parliamentary committees "is a signal that parties can agree if there is such a will."

On November 14 talks between parties to set up a coalition with the New Conservative Party's Jānis Bordāns as PM came to a halt as the Development/For!, the National Alliance and the New Unity party asked president Raimonds Vējonis to pick another candidate for PM.

The new Latvian parliament is quite fragmented, with the Harmony party holding 23 seats, KPV LV and the New Conservative Party with 16 seats each, Development/For! scoring 13 seats, the same as the National Alliance. The Greens and Farmers Union won 11 seats and New Unity won 8. 

The arithmetic has been further complicated by various parties saying they are unwilling to work with various other parties. Most notably no other party in the Saeima has expressed willingness to work with Harmony and the New Conservatives have ruled out being in the same coalition as the Greens and Farmers Alliance.

Gobzems, a lawyer by trade, is a highly controversial figure who has been  extremely critical of media coverage of his party and himself, while taking pride in communicating with his voters via social media.

1 comment
Juris Kaža
Aldis Gobzems is a danger to media freedom. He has filed criminal defamation charges against two Re:Baltica journalists for an article they wrote speculating that Gobzems' Who Owns the State? party (KPVLV) could be linked to alleged oligarch Ainars Šlesers (based on a number of facts and associations). He said he would fire a journalist at Latvian Radio if he were Prime Minister (something not in the PMs powers). Gobzems also filed a complaint with the Security Police accusing Re:Baltica of subverting the electoral process, something that could carry a 15-year prison sentence. While Gobzems effusively apoloigized to journalists on Facebook (where I and several others remain blocked), there is no indication that he has withdrawn his complaints to the police (which Re:Baltica must use its lawyers to answer and which will surely be dismissed). A politician who harasses and tries to maliciously prosecute journalists is not fit to be Prime Minister.
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