Jurečka: We Are the Social Conscience of the Government

Stanislava Benešová

In an interview, Marian Jurečka, Chairman of the Christian Democrats (KDU-ČSL) and Minister of Labor and Social Affairs, expressed his belief that the internal conflicts due to cultural wars have been overcome. He is confident that they will be able to reverse the declining preferences and convince voters that they are the social conscience of the government and genuinely committed to ecology.

Jurečka emphasized the importance of showcasing that the Christian Democrats have a place in 21st-century politics and can respond to societal demands. He stated that one of the reasons for their efforts is to persuade hesitant and new voters. Although it was not an election year, the party wanted to develop a program, and the entire party worked on it, unlike when unknown authors wrote a book for Prime Minister Babiš.

When asked about the decline in voter preferences, Jurečka pointed out that governments tend to become unpopular halfway through their term, and they also face various challenges, such as the war in Ukraine, high energy prices, and migration. He acknowledged that their voters are mainly interested in social policy, and explaining what they have achieved in the social field is essential.

In addition, the Christian Democrats aim to appeal to voters who prioritize environmental issues. Jurečka stated they want to offer their solutions on environmental protection and landscape care, not in an activist manner but reasonably.

The government’s trust in the Chamber of Deputies is highlighted in another article, showing their commitment to their responsibilities.

Jurečka defended the claim of being the social conscience of the government by highlighting the party’s efforts in preparing pension and social benefits reforms. They are also working to support families, allowing children to stay within their families instead of being taken away. Additionally, they aim to ensure suitable foster parents when necessary.

The Christian Democrats support housing initiatives under the Ministry of the Environment. Jurečka acknowledged the need for better communication and patience in presenting the government’s accomplishments.

Regarding their position towards the Civic Democratic Party (ODS), Jurečka disagreed that they do not publicly distance themselves enough. He emphasized that they have repeatedly increased essential social support, such as social minimums, child benefits, and mobility allowances. Despite opposition from coalition partners, they managed to implement parental benefits. They are also preparing to increase contributions for care. They aim to make the system more targeted and transparent, preventing misuse of benefits by people capable of working.

Jurečka explained that the country does not need a government that publicly argues during challenging times. They negotiate with partners behind closed doors and present only the results.

When asked about the damage caused to the party’s reputation due to culture wars, Jurečka mentioned that they have discussed the matter internally. He stated that their long-term views remain unchanged, particularly on issues like same-sex marriage. However, they have made progress and practically prepared a proposal that adjusts the rights of registered partners, which has the only chance of being approved.

Jurečka also emphasized that he respects the conscience objections of some members of parliament regarding specific proposals. There are varying opinions among their MPs and senators, with some supporting the Istanbul Convention and others considering support for marriage for all when necessary.