Gobzems scorches to top of Saeima speakers' leader board

Independent Saeima deputy Aldis Gobzems - who a year ago was briefly a nominee to become Prime Minister -  spoke in parliament more times than anyone else during the Autumn session, according to figures released by the Saeima Press Service December 27.

Gobzems, formerly of the KPV party but now unattached to any party, made his way to the plate an astonishing 163 times, putting him streets ahead of the Greens and Farmers Union (ZZS) top batter Viktors Valainis (112 speeches); another free agent, Jūlija Stepaņenko (97 speeches) was the only other speaker who came close to racking up a century of orations.

Fourth place in the debating stakes went to Dana Reizniece-Ozola (ZZS) with 67 speeches, while Harmony's MVPs were Vjačeslavs Dombrovskis (62 speeches) and Ivars Zariņš (61 speeches). Notably, all the top six were opposition MPs with no coalition representatives proving quite as locquacious - nay, verbose! Nay, garrulous! Or might one even venture to suggest... orotund? - as their political rivals.

The 13th Saeima adopted 148 laws in during the Autumn session consisting of 16 scheduled sittings, 5 extraordinary sittings and one ceremonial sitting, giving Gobzems an impressive per-sitting average of 7.4 speeches and a speech-per-law ratio of 1.10.

In the autumn session, 150 bills were submitted to the parliamentary commissions for consideration, of which 118 were submitted by the Cabinet, 14 by deputies and 18 by the Saeima commissions.

When working on the submitted bills - considering them in second and third reading - the Saeima evaluated 1816 proposed amendments in total.

The 2020 winter session starts January 9, so let's hope the deputies don't do too much damage to their tonsils over the holiday period so they can return in tip-top shape.    

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