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[PMQ]  Prime Minister´s Questions [31.05.17]


"Questions to the Prime Minister!"

This was the second PMQ for Prime Minister Vangelis Dimitrious, the former Interior Minister who had been thrust into a position of power following the scandal that had brought down the previous United government. They were from the same party, but Vangelis was less of a politician, more of a public administrator. He was obviously good at delving into the details of public policy, helping decide the best options for running the government, making sure that the wheels kept turning.

Still, if news outlets were to be trusted, he was not so skilled as a politician, as a tactical operator who knew how to respond to attacks, how to tackle trick questions, how to not only set policy, but also make sure the environment was right to implement it, and survive to keep fighting for it. Then again, many had defended the Prime Minister. His average approval rating, following his first PMQ, remained high at 62%, which gave him plenty of wiggle room.

"Mr Dimitrious has shown himself to be an open book, honest about his policy priorities, even if they fall into the traps set by the Opposition. Yet, in the aftermath of the largest political scandal in recent years, that may be just what the electorate needs to see their confidence in public officials restored."

She had read that from The Byzantium Herald, a well regarded newspaper, just days ago. It had been colder than many had hoped for, but reasonably balanced. This second PMQ was widely expected as an opportunity to discard Vangelis as "all policy and no politics", or for him to prove his skill as a tactician.

"Aristides Kouvelas"

A Traditionalist, Kouvelas was one of the moderate ones, often voting across party lines in the less prominent bills. He rose, then spoke.

"May the Prime Minister list his engagements for the day?"


Vangelis stood up with a bottle of his favourite brand tonic water in a different container, to avoid blatant advertising. A set of cut lime was already at the podium, as he had specially placed it there at the start of the current session. Social media had turned his love of the seltzer into a self-propagating meme, and while he didn't come from a time where such sensations come and go in as short a lifespan as a mouse in a snake pit, he certainly enjoyed the mostly harmless positivity that he saw whenever doing public events. His response came as soon as he got to the podium.

"To the honourable friend, and to the house as it was, my engagements for the day have not been very numerous. A meeting with the Education Minister in the morning and another meeting with the Defence Minister later this evening, but nothing else planned on the agenda.

With that in mind, Madam Speaker, I would like to make an announcement before the next question. It's not something that should wait, by any means."

The PM stopped talking and took the glass container of seltzer and poured out a glass for him. He set the container in the podium after having poured out some, and grabbed a lime to squeeze.


She chuckled internally, as soon as she noticed the tonic water. It had become quite the sensation on social media, and even mainstream news had picked on that. Personally, she found it quite endearing and amusing. Hopefully the Prime Minister would turn his tonic water into a staple of Question Time.

In any case, she nodded, consenting to the announcement. If she was right, it was going to be about the Prime Minister's executive appointments. They would all find out in a few seconds.


"Thank you, Madam Speaker. I am pleased to announce that I have organised my full and final cabinet, whose composition is made up of two MEs from the Environmentalists, four MEs from the Liberal Alliance, and 8 MEs from Selenids United.

The Interior Minister shall be Theodora Arsenis, of Selenids United. The Foreign Minister shall be Adelpha Thanou, of Selenids United. The Defence Minister shall be Vrisiis Papandreou, of Selenids United. The Treasury Minister shall be Antonis Simitis, of the Liberal Alliance. The Health Minister shall be Sofia Giannakou, of the Liberal Alliance. The Space Minister shall be Panos Efthymios, of Selenids United. The Environmental Minister shall be Tasos Gennimata, of the Environmentalists."

Vangelis stopped for a moment to take a drink of the lime-infused tonic water. He had left the squeezed lime on the rim of the glass, but decided that next week's should be a lemon, even if he preferred the deliciously sour green fruit.

"The Energy Minister shall be Eleni Dendias, of the Liberal Alliance. The Education Minister shall be Yannis Papangelopoulos, of Selenids United. The Agriculture Minister shall be Philippa Karamanlis, of the Environmentalists. The Economic Minister shall be Konstantinos Fyssas, of the Liberal Alliance. The Transportation Minister shall be Franguolis Roupakias, of Selenids United. The Law Minister shall be Dimitra Vgenpoulos, of Selenids United. The Culture Minister shall be Georgios Samaras, of Selenids United.

I will now take questions from both the ruling coalition and the opposition coalition until the tonic water is gone."


Anna allowed the brief chuckle in response to that comment. It was harmless, and she subscribed to the theory that a little laughter and friendly banter was rarely out of place in PMQ; all in good measure, obviously. After it subsided, she called the first name on the list.

"Konstantinos Varoufakis."

He was longtime member of Selenids United, and a reliable government supporter, his views being mostly aligned with those of the party, and even during the scandal that brought the previous government down, he had made sure to express his concern for the government, rather than the broader party. It had paid off, and his steadfast defense of the party and the coalition it led had helped keep members united. He was not the only cause behind that, obviously, but it was fair to say he had played a significant role.

"Thank you, Madam Speaker." He turned to the Prime Minister. "Recently the Leader of Soltek, Edward Yutan, threatened the community of nations, the latest in a long line of provocations. Does the Prime Minister agree with me that these provocations must stop, and that the Artemian Union remains a major factor in keeping the world safe from dictators like Yutan?"


Vangelis's eye twitched a little while listening to Varoufakis speak. It was barely noticeable underneath the bushy white eyebrows he had, but one could not discount anything when cameras are trained on your face.

"To the honourable friend, for once, I agree with the words of our enemy Kalos. Yutan is childish, but childish activities do not represent the full extent of a person's thoughts or ideas. We as a people and as an alliance must stand up to the actions of oppressors and dictators everywhere and anywhere they may be, and with Ministers Papandreou and Thanou next week in Sartoria, the AU shall discuss a more total policy towards Yutan and those like him."

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