A Romanian politician Edmond Talmacean has sparked controversy and criticism after showing off his dance moves on a national television show.
The 40-year-old Bucharest politician has inspired national headlines with his Michael Jackson-inspired moonwalk on a television show and his impersonations of the late dictator Nicolae Ceausescu.
“Dancing is another kind of political message to appeal to the younger generation, that it is good to have fun … that you can go to a disco and dance,” said Mr. Talmacean. However, not everyone enjoyed his performance and party leaders have ordered him to tone down.
Prime Minister Emil Boc declared the routine was more suited to “showbiz” than politics, while Vasile Blaga of the Democratic Liberal Party said the fringe lawmaker should head over to the TV program “Dancing with the Stars.”
Despite the official disapproval, Talmacean is trending big time, gossiped about in coffee bars and hairdressing shops. Traffic to his political blog has soared, boosting it from 49th most viewed to the seventh in just two weeks.
“I think he expressed the way he felt which is good,” said Valentina Tudor, 25, a sandwich vendor in Bucharest, the capital. “It’s not as if he stole or did something bad. He is talented. I can’t imagine (President) Basescu doing the moonwalk.”
In Romania, the home of Dracula and other occult traditions, politics are renowned for being occasionally off-the-wall. President Traian Basescu and his aides have been known to wear purple on certain days to ward off evil.Basescu has also appeared dancing with his wife or jiving with Gypsies – but his moves are far from Internet gold.
Talmacean promised on Monday to keep a low profile until party elections next month but says he has no regrets. “I danced, I sang. These are the qualities of the Romanian people,” he said. [via BBC and MSNBC]