Last week, Tilen Božič, State Secretary at the Ministry of Finance, submitted his resignation. The public got to know him better for the first time when he asserted at a press conference that he could not claim that the tax reform would bring relief from work. Soon, all the wrath of the Prime Minister was unleashed on him, who accused the Ministry of Finance that the tax reform had been inappropriately communicated. The Minister of Finance accepted Božič’s resignation, but many claim that the Minister should resign, not the Secretary of State. There are two types of responses in the opposition ranks. The first is that “a fish rots from the head down” and that Božič is the sacrificial lamb for the biggest weakness of the government, whose president is Golob. Others, that Božič’s resignation is an indication of the withdrawal of the “backgrounds” from the sinking ship.
The government’s communications debacle on almost all fronts continues to upset the public. Special attention is paid to the tax reform, which we were told is the basis of all reforms. After he reduced the income of the entire working population through changes in the income tax legislation, he decided that now they will relieve the burden on wages again (despite Božič’s words), otherwise we do not need tax reform at all. “Once we have sorted this out, we can focus on property,” he asserted, then in the same breath denied the communication of government representatives and added that he was not talking about real estate. These are already burdened with compensation for the use of building land, and the government will not go into this part, despite the fact that the public has been hearing about all possible versions of real estate taxation for several months.
Labour Minister Luka Mesec claimed last week that pensions will have to wait a little longer, as public sector salaries and health care reform are now at the fore. How?
According to the leader of the parliamentary group Jelka Godec, the SDS is convinced that the government has several weak points, but that the weakest point is Prime Minister Robert Golob, and that reckoning with left-wing governments in front of the cameras is their old habit. Godec also said that the latest events are indicative that there are no reforms, but only “analyses, strategic councils, ideas, discussions, agreements, timelines that are not fulfilled.” They do not expect reforms in the future either, because “the reform year is far from being a reform year.” The SDS estimates that the public had extremely high expectations of the government, which it is currently not meeting, and major legislative upheavals are not to be expected until the summer either.
They made a similar comment in NSi party, where their parliamentary group leader Janez Cigler Kralj said “If that responsible Prime Minister pulls back and somehow indicates that if they fail to convince people of the necessity of reforms, they will not carry them out, that is just a bad signal, because people will find it difficult to follow someone who is not yet sure whether he will be able to convince people.” He added: “Unfortunately, it once again shows that governments of new faces lack operational ability and political courage, despite the fact that they usually have a large political majority and power.”
Is Božič’s departure the beginning of the collapse of Golob’s government
Another analysis of the departure of State Secretary Božič appeared in the public eye. Political commentator Tomaž Štih claims that he is a “political survivor” or someone who is in politics for the long term because he has the ability to survive. Because he probably intends to serve in some other left-wing government, “he has a feeling at which station to get off.”