The level of optimism among Romanians is at the lowest level in the last 15 years, shows a new Soros Foundation Romania survey conducted in the framework of the Romanian Electoral Studies programme, the results of which were made public yesterday. According to the survey, 82 per cent of Romanians think Romania is headed in the wrong direction and only 12 per cent believe the direction is good. Questioned about their participating in the voting process, 47 per cent of the respondents answered that they would definitely vote, 24 per cent said they would most likely vote, 8 per cent they most likely would not vote and 18 per cent that they would definitely not go to the polls. In respect of voting preferences, only 49 per cent of the citizens have a definite opinion on the political party they will vote for in the next election. Of those, 55 per cent prefer USL, 18 per cent – PDL, 9 per cent – The People’s Party Dan Diaconescu (PPDD). The forth party that would be above the electoral threshold is UDMR, on 7 per cent. On the other hand, the opinion poll shows that only 32 per cent of respondents are able to give a concrete answer to an open ended question about their voting intentions in the presidential election. The first positions are taken by the only candidates who are known so far: Crin Antonescu (PNL) – 31 per cent and Dan Diaconescu (PPDD) – 14 per cent. In Bucharest, the share of people who categorically refuse to vote in elections and who show a high level of disinterest in political affairs is double compared to the national average – almost one third of the people of Bucharest say they are not going to the polls, according to the quoted source. An analysis of their electoral preferences suggests that USL is mostly preferred by people who have affected by the crisis as well as by individuals on an average-income. The Social-Liberals are preferred by people with a higher education more than by people with middle or elementary education. The poll indicates that higher income individuals are more inclined to vote for the ruling party, and so are those who have not been directly affected by the economic crisis. The poll was conducted in the November 6 – 19, 2011 period on a sample group of 1,200 respondents over 18, by The Gallup Organization Romania and has a confidence interval of +/- 2.7 per cent.