Parties name their key figures in the election headquarters

Dmytro VYDRIN: Kliuiev is a tried-and-true concerning temptations

Simultaneously, on the same day the nation got to know who will be now in charge of the major political forces’ election campaigns in the upcoming election. There has been no sensation. Andrii Kliuiev was elected the Party of Regions’ head of campaign headquarters, while Oleksandr Turchynov will staff the campaign of the United Opposition (Fatherland and Front of Change). Risks were undesirable, for too much is at stake, thus both campaigns are entrusted to time-tested functionaries. Both Kliuiev and Turchynov have already led the staffs of their respective parties.

The goals are obvious. While some will keep the power, the others want to take over.

“It is necessary to revive the parliament in this country, instead of this body of MPs, which is totally under control of President Yanukovych’s administration,” said Arsenii Yatseniuk, as he spoke from the rostrum on behalf of the United Opposition. “We will bring to the new parliament of Ukraine a new, democratic majority, with an honest pro-Ukrainian policy and a responsibility before the Ukrainian nation. One of the first laws to be passed by the democratic majority is the law on the process of impeachment of the president. We will impose criminal liability for voting with other MPs’ cards.”

Kliuiev has already said that he is planning to take a leave for the time of the election campaign. “I will take a leave from the post of the Secretary of the National Security and Defense Council, so that there be no grounds to suspect me of using the administrative resource. The Party of Regions’ election staff will work transparently and openly during the parliamentary election.” According to Kliuiev, his first deputy Oleksandr Medvedko will step in for him during his leave from the NSDC.

Some more formalities now. Serhii Tihipko will manage the pre-election campaign of the Party of Regions (not to be confused with the head of campaign headquarters). Oleksandr Yefremov is Kliuiev’s deputy for VIP-propagandists and for coordination with the Verkhovna Rada. Oleksandr Lavrynovych was elected his deputy for compliance and legal issues, while Volodymyr Rybak is deputy for coordination with political parties and NGOs, and Borys Kolesnikov is deputy for ideology.

The forthcoming campaign promises to be a heated one. The ultimate result depends on the players’ skill to calculate their moves up front, and man the posts efficiently. Kliuiev and Turchynov will be crucial figures in many aspects for the rivaling parties. They are vested with huge responsibility. Given the popular apathy for all politicians, will they be able to live up to their reputation as Gray Cardinals?

“Kliuiev is one of the most reliable men in terms of temptation,” says political scientist Dmytro VYDRIN. “Any head of campaign headquarters faces a colossal temptation, as they may be tried by huge fund flows and immense amounts of insider information. Thus there will always be a temptation to somehow make use of the money and information for personal ends. Since Kliuiev is the most reliable person in this aspect, the choice was made in his favor.

“Turchynov answered different demands. Today’s opposition has a demand for frenzy and for an ability to confront any rules, obstacles, or laws. Many will remember how Turchynov attacked the car which was about to take away his deputy, responsible for financial matters. The claims against him seemed to be well-grounded, yet he assaulted that car nevertheless. Today this quality is even more necessary.

“Why them, and not anyone else? The problem with the Party of Regions, just like any other party, is in its certain inertness and conservatism. On the one hand, they complain about the lack of the young, and on the other, they do everything possible to prevent these young people from coming to the fore. The parties’ main task is to create tools to search for young, talented individuals, to select and train them. There is nothing like a party school. Lenin created such schools in his time. Today, such schools are functioning at all respectable European parties. In Ukraine, this is any political party’s weak point.

“This election is going to compel a lot of attention. Recently I visited several European parliaments: Italian, German, and French. Everywhere I am told by both MPs and experts that the parliamentary election in Ukraine is in the focus of the West’s political and analytical structures’ meticulous attention. Therefore, one must be insane to provoke an aggravation of the situation in Ukraine.”