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Steinegger elected to fourth term as Radical president

Switzerland's Radical Party has elected Franz Steinegger to a fourth term as party president. The decision came on the first day of a party conference in Pfäffikon, canton Schwyz.

Switzerland's Radical Party has elected Franz Steinegger to a fourth term as party president. The decision came on the first day of a party conference in Pfäffikon, canton Schwyz.

However, Steinegger told the 143 delegates present that he would step down after one or two years, to make way for somebody else to lead the Radicals into the next general elections in 2003.·

With the Swiss political scene currently dominated by the People's Party's Christoph Blocher's comments associating the Social Democrats with fascism, Steinegger could not but add his views on the controversy. The new Radical Party head lambasted Blocher, saying his words smacked of the kind of rhetoric heard in the 1950's and 1960's.

Steinegger added that his party had no intention of becoming involved in a row, which simply served to underline the People Party's inability to show tolerance toward people with diverging political views.

He said the controversy was detracting attention from the country's real problems, and showed that the People's Party was incapable of coming up with adequate solutions to concrete problems.·

With reference to his own party's plans, Steinegger said he was opposed to increased state intervention, and that he was in favour of a drop in taxes. But, he emphasised that his position did not imply the Radicals wanted politics to be entirely marginalised in favour of unchecked economic globalisation.

Swissinfo and agencies


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