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PSD/CDS join forces to fight elections under ‘Democratic Alliance’ (AD)

Decision rides headlong into controversy

The PSD/ CDS ‘Democratic Alliance’ (AD) announced on Thursday to fight parliamentary elections in March has received scathing criticism from left to right.

The idea was to present a democratic alliance “to place the Portuguese people in first place, and leave party political and private interests in second place” (this taken from the social media message of former PSD vice-chairman Miguel Pinto Luz). Candidates standing as ‘independents’ are also invited to join.

The resurrected AD will cover both legislative and European elections of 2024, as well as the elections of in the autonomous regions of Madeira and Azores. It will also be the basis of local agreements for the 2025 municipal elections, announced PSD and CDS leaders Luís Montenegro and Nuno Melo.

The essential aim is “effective political and policy change” in the country, “with much more ambition towards high levels of prosperity, economic growth and income and opportunities for all the Portuguese.

A government with “high ethical standards, integrity, political responsibility, respect for the separation of powers and institutions, and an effective commitment to fighting corruption and influence peddling.

“This alliance promises the Portuguese a different way of governing“, pledged the duo.

But the initials ‘AD’ hark to another time – a time PS Socialists have stressed not only has passed, but involved the withdrawing of traditional Christmas subsidies from workers’ pay packets…

And the Monarchist party (PPM) complains ‘AD’ were its initials, and yet it hasn’t been invited into the new club in a way its members can accept.

“The conditions that were proposed to us, and the very short deadline given to us to respond, were interpreted by us as humiliating for a party that will be celebrating 50 years of history next year,” read a statement issued by the party shortly after the new alliance was presented.

According to PPM spokesman Valdemar Almeida, PPM was invited to be part of the new AD, but on the condition that monarchist candidates would not stand for election in any seats.

Between the dishonour of “participating under these conditions” or staying out while defending the party’s honour and dignity, the PPM chose to stay out.

The monarchists also consider that, without the PPM, the use of the acronym AD by the PSD and CDS is not legal, and warn that they will be notifying the Constitutional Court.

Meantime, CHEGA leader André Ventura believes the decision is a tactical ‘hotch-potch’ that rekindles memories of the last PSD/ CDS coalition ‘which did not end well’. Indeed, following its alignment with PSD in government, the CDS progressively lost seats in subsequent elections to the point where now it has none at all. ND

Source material: SIC Notícias/ ECO online