Saturday, July 7, 2007

Basescu Only Trusted Leader in Romania

(Angus Reid Global Monitor) - Romanian president Traian Basescu is the only national political leader who holds the confidence of a majority of the country’s residents, according to a poll by IMAS. 56 per cent of respondents say they trust Basescu.

New Generation Party (PNG) leader Gigi Becali is next on the list with 33 per cent, followed by Liberal-Democrats (PLD) leader Theodor Stolojan with 31 per cent. Less than 20 per cent of respondents trust Democratic Party (PD) leader Emil Boc, former president and Social Democratic Party (PSD) member Ion Iliescu, and PSD leader Mircea Geoana, and current prime minister Calin Popescu Tariceanu.

The Alliance for Justice and Truth (DA)—comprising the PD and the National Liberal Party (PNL)—won the November 2004 parliamentary election, securing 132 seats in the 332-member Chamber of Deputies. DA candidate Basescu won the presidential run-off in December 2004 with 51.23 per cent of the vote, defeating PSD contender Adrian Nastase. Basescu later appointed fellow alliance member Tariceanu as prime minister.

Along with Bulgaria, Romania joined the European Union (EU) on Jan. 1. This year, tensions between Basescu and Tariceanu have increased, and the coalition government has come to a stalemate. In April, Basescu was suspended from the presidency over charges of abuse of power in a 322-108 Chamber of Deputies vote, following an initiative developed by PNL members of parliament loyal to Tariceanu.

On May 19, 74 per cent of participating Romanian voters rejected Basescu’s impeachment in a national referendum.

On Jul. 3, deputy prime minister and Hungarian Democratic Alliance of Romania (UDMR) leader Marko Bela resigned from the government. Bela had announced he would leave office shortly after the referendum because his party endorsed the impeachment drive against Basescu. In a statement, Bela said the UDMR would continue supporting the current government.

Polling Data

Do you trust the following politicians?
(Positive responses listed)

Current president Traian Basescu

56%

New Generation Party (PNG) leader Gigi Becali

33%

Liberal-Democrats (PLD) leader Theodor Stolojan

31%

Democratic Party (PD) leader Emil Boc

18%

Former president Ion Iliescu

18%

Social Democratic Party (PSD) leader Mircea Geoana

16%

Prime minister Calin Popescu Tariceanu

13%

Source: IMAS
Methodology: Interviews to 1,300 Romanian adults, conducted from Jun. 9 to Jun. 17, 2007. Margin of error is 2.6 per cent.

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