By Georgi Gotev
Vesselin Mareshki, leader of the populist party Volya, was chosen by Marine Le Pen as her partner in Bulgaria, a country she visited twice in the run-up to the European elections. As this website predicted, this “investment” was a miscalculation. Although Mareshki overspent in terms of campaigning, he got 3.62%, quite far from the 5.88% needed to pass the threshold for European elections, which is quite high in Bulgaria.
These days, when ambitious politicians such as Marine Le Pen try to form a political group, it becomes clear why Mareshki and his Volya party were so important to her. By having a group, politicians have more money and speaking time, access to top positions, including Vice President of the Parliament.
In order to form a European Parliament group seven different countries must be represented.
For the time being, Le Pen’s group, expected to be called European Alliance of People and Nations (EAPN), has six member countries on board: Rassemblement National (France), the League (Italy), Alternative fur Deutschland (Germany), Vlaams Belang (Belgium), Freedom Party (Austria), People’s party (Denmark).
The missing seventh member is precisely Mareshki’s Volya party.
It is highly possible that Marine Le Pen and her EAPN allies will find a seventh ally, possibly from the decomposing EFDD group, in which the Brexiteers sit. Moreover, in case Brexit materializes, this group will most likely be defunct.
But newcomer in such a strong position would negotiate his partnership very dearly. If the Brexiteers come along, they will ask for the presidency of the group.
Mareshki was such a sweetheart – no ambition, to the contrary, he invested a lot for the common cause. Possibly out of stupidity. But Le Pen was stupid to bank on him, too.