More than 39 per cent of Romanians will “definitely” vote on May 26, according to the Romanian Public Opinion Barometer published on Monday, while the PSD and PNL are neck and neck in their voting intentions.
The Barometer was conducted by the Romanian Academy, the Laboratory for the Analysis of Informational War and Strategic Communication, and the ‘Ion I.C. Bratianu’ Political Science and International Relations Institute of the Romanian Academy.
The opinion poll is “the amplest snapshot of Romanian society, on all of its dimensions: political (European Parliament elections), economic, social, ethnic, religious, foreign policy and security policy.”
Starting this year, the Romanian Academy will publish the Romanian Public Opinion Barometer in the spring and autumn.
The data was collected from April 12 to May 3, from a sample of 1,050 adult respondents.
“The political data generates the highest interest. Nobody is saying on what voter turnout level the figures presented on television in the last months are based. This must be explained. We cannot sell to the public any figure as being an electoral forecast. Exit-polls are something else. The pre-elections opinion polls must be seen with great caution,” Bucharest University lecturer Darie Cristea said.
76.4 per cent of respondents believe that things are going in a wrong direction in Romania. The percentage is similar to the one registered in the last two years.
Regarding Europe, 54.7 per cent of respondents believe that the direction taken is good, while 30.6 per cent believe the direction is wrong.
“The perception that things are going in the right direction in Europe is growing. An interesting observation, considering that the European Union is facing scepticism,” he added.
The level of corruption, the discrepancies between rich and poor, and the environment are among the topics that preoccupy Romanians.
Voter turnout and voting intentions for political parties at EP elections
The poll is the snapshot of a moment, but it also has forecast capabilities, Cristea added. “In Romania, when a simple question is asked, the result is that 60 per cent of the population will vote. If we notice what happened in the past, we will see that’s not the case…”
Following the announced referendum, “we expect it to strengthen the idea of voter turnout. It remains to be seen whether the trend will be maintained until May 26.”
Without having the pretention of a forecast, but only interest toward the elections, Cristea presented the answers to the question: “on a scale of 1 to 10, point to what extent you intend to vote in the European parliament elections,” 10 meaning “I will definitely vote.” Thus, 39.2 per cent of the respondents said that they will definitely vote. This would represent a hike of 7 percentage points compared to the voter turnout level registered in 2014.
Those who will definitely vote have selected the following parties: PSD – 26.4 per cent; PNL – 26.1 per cent; 2020 Alliance – 20.1 per cent; Pro Romania – 8.5 per cent; ALDE – 8.2 per cent; UDMR – 4 per cent; PMP – 3.5 per cent; UNPR – 1 per cent.
Regarding the referendum, 59 per cent of respondents agree with President Klaus Iohannis deciding to hold a referendum on the judiciary, while 23.8 per cent disagree.
The Armed Forces, the Romanian Orthodox Church and the Romanian Academy are the national institutions that enjoy the highest approval ratings, followed by the Police, while NATO (56.1 per cent) and the European Union (55.3 per cent) are the international institutions that enjoy the highest approval ratings.