Romanian legislative election, 2012

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Romanian legislative election, 2012
Romania
2008 ←
9 December 2012 (2012-12-09)
→ 2016

All 137 seats in the Senate
All 315 seats in the Chamber of Deputies
Turnout 41.76%[1]
  First party Second party
  Wiki ponta.jpg Crin Antonescu.jpg Vasile Blaga (3).PNG
Mihai Răzvan Ungureanu.jpg
Leader Victor Ponta and Crin Antonescu Vasile Blaga and Mihai Razvan Ungureanu
Party USL ARD
Leader since 2010 2012
Leader's seat CD 6-20
S 2-36
S 3-37
S 1-2
Last election 49+28 S
114+65 D
51 S
115 D
Seats won 122 S
273 D
24 S
56 D
Seat change Increase 45 S
Increase 94 D
Decrease 27 S
Decrease 59 D
Popular vote 4,457,526 S
4,344,288 D
1,239,318 S
1,223,189 D
Percentage 60.07% S
58.61% D
16.72% S
16.52% D

  Third party Fourth party
 
PP-DD
Kelemen Hunor.jpg
Leader Dan Diaconescu Hunor Kelemen
Party PP-DD UDMR
Leader since 2011 2010
Leader's seat Was not elected CD 2-21
Last election New party 9 S
22 D
Seats won 21 S
47 D
9 S
18 D
Seat change Increase 21 S
Increase 47 D
Steady 0 S
Decrease 2 D
Popular vote 1,086,822 S
1,036,730 D
388,528 S
380,656 D
Percentage 14.63% S
13.98% D
5.25% S
5.15% D

Parlament Romania alegeri 2012.png


Prime Minister before election

Victor Ponta
USL

Prime Minister-designate

Victor Ponta
USL

Legislative elections were held in Romania on 9 December 2012. The Social Liberal Union of Prime Minister Victor Ponta won an absolute majority in both the Chamber of Deputies and the Senate. Despite the severe weather in parts of the country, the turnout was at 41.7%, higher than the last legislative elections held in 2008 which saw a presence of 39.20%.

The Social Liberal Union obtained a huge majority in both the Chamber of Deputies and the Senate, with 60.07% and 58.61% of the votes respectively and in MP mandates, a record number of 395 seats. Far behind, the Right Romania Alliance came in second place with only 16.72% and 16.52% of the votes and 80 seats, losing about half of what they won in 2008. The Right Romania alliance officially dissolved after the election.[2] People's Party – Dan Diaconescu and Hungarian Democratic Union of Romania were the only other political groups that won seats in the Senate. Several parties for ethnic minorities also received individual seats in the Chamber of Deputies.

Coat of arms of Romania
This article is part of a series on the
politics and government of
Romania

Background[edit]

Protests[edit]

Following weeks of demonstrations against austerity measures demanded by the International Monetary Fund for a multi-billion US dollar loan, Prime Minister Emil Boc resigned from his post on 6 February 2012. The opposition, represented by Social Liberal Union leaders Victor Ponta and Crin Antonescu, then called for early elections. However, as the three parties behind the government (PDL, UDMR, UNPR) still relied on a slight parliamentary majority, an interim solution was agreed with the opposition that the government could stay in power until the next elections, conditional of electing a political independent technocrat as the new prime minister. The former Foreign Intelligence Service Director Mihai Răzvan Ungureanu was appointed interim prime minister on 9 February as a result.

The government announced the intention to hold legislative and local elections at the same time, by lengthening the term of the local elected officials (Mayors, Local Councils, County Councils and County Councils Presidents). It was suspected the attempt to delay local elections were related to the fact, that massive street protests had erupted, and at the same time the Opposition political alliance Social Liberal Union went on strike in Parliament, pushing for early legislative elections to be called one or two weeks after local elections in June. Initially, the government proposed an election date in November 2012, but as the mayoral mandates expire in June 2012, this was ruled unconstitutional. The local elections were eventually held on 10 June, with an unexpected runoff and three repeated elections in 17 June.

Motion of no confidence[edit]

The political alliance Social Liberal Union, at that time comprising the three parties PSD, PNL, and PC, initiated and succeeded to vote a motion of no confidence against Mihai Răzvan Ungureanu and his cabinet on 27 April 2012 after just two months in office. President Traian Basescu nominated Opposition leader and president of the Social Democratic Party, Victor Ponta as Prime minister.[3]

Electoral system[edit]

In May 2012, the new USL government passed an electoral law in parliament, which changed the election system to a single-round FPTP system without the 5% electoral threshold[4] with extra seats for minorities, both ethnic minorities and Romanian minorities. However, after PDL, fearing poor results in the elections ahead because of it, appealed the Constitutional Court of Romania who invalidated the law on 27 June 2012 and reinstated the old one.[5] A consequence of this is that after the 2012 legislative elections the size of the new Parliament grew to a record total number of 588, a plus 117 seats than in the last legislature: 39 supplementary Senate seats, and 97 supplementary Chamber of Deputies seats, including the 18 seats for the ethnic minorities parties and organisations.

Party standings and political alliances[edit]

In late 2010 the PSD+PC Alliance broke up without affecting the MEP seat held by the PC. In January 2011 the National Liberal Party – PNL and the Conservative Party – PC formed the Centre Right Alliance – ACD. In February 2011 ACD together with the Social Democratic Party – PSD formed the Social Liberal Union – USL. Following the local election, PSD and the National Union for the Progress of Romania – UNPR formed the Centre Left Alliance, thus UNPR joining USL in mid-2012.

For the 2012 local election PDL formed various county-level alliances with a wide range of parties, including UNPR. Following the presidential impeachment referendum it urged the formation of a political alliance with a number of minor political parties and foundations, such as Noua Republică led by Mihail Neamțu, and the Centre-Right Civic Initiative led by Mihai Răzvan Ungureanu. Eventually Ungureanu joined a minor party, Civic Force Party, and was elected its president. The alliance registered at the Central Electoral Bureau was called Right Romania Alliance – ARD formed by PDL, PNȚCD and FC.

Opinion polling[edit]

The PDL centred ARD alliance was formed late after the Romanian presidential impeachment referendum, 2012. As a result, some opinion polls do not include the ARD. Opinion polls that show PDL do not show ARD.

UNPR joined USL in August–September 2012, in a sceptical environment. As a result, some opinion polls show both political entities. PNG-CD leader George Becali joined the PNL an runs backed by the USL in Bucharest. His former party did not propose any candidates for this election.

Polling Firm Date Source USL ARD PDL PP-DD UDMR PRM PNG-CD UNPR Others Undecided
IMAS 6 September 2012 [1] 57.1% N/A 17.8% 14.1% 5.8% 3% 0.6% 0.3% 1.3% N/A
CSCI 9 September 2012 [2] 62% N/A 19% 11% 4% 2% N/A N/A 2% N/A
CSOP 15 September 2012 [3], [4] 50% N/A 21% 12% 5% 3% 1% 1% 5% N/A
49% 24% N/A 14% 5% 3% 2% 1% 2% N/A
IMAS 27 September 2012 [5] 55% N/A 17.8% 15.5% 5.3% 2% 1.1% 0.3% 3% N/A
CSCI 28 September 2012 [6] 58% 16% N/A 18% 5% 2% 1% N/A N/A N/A
Avangarde 21 November 2012 [7] 62% 15% N/A 14% 3% 2% 1% N/A 3% N/A
CCSB 3 December 2012 [8] 62% 17% N/A 10% 5% 2% N/A N/A 4% N/A

Candidates[edit]

Out of the 12 contesting parties running for the Chamber of Deputies and the Senate, only three submitted a full list of candidates: Social Liberal Union, Right Romania Alliance, and Hungarian Democratic Union of Romania. People's Party - Dan Diaconescu submitted a list with one candidate less than all the available colleges. Only one independent candidate decided to run for the Senate, and 12 for the Chamber of Deputies. There were 18 national minorities associations proposing one candidate each for the Chamber of Deputies.

Results[edit]

The Social Liberal Union maintained majority in both the Chamber of Deputies and the Senate.

Senate[edit]

The results for the Senate
e • d Summary of the 9 December 2012 Senate of Romania election results
Parties and alliances Number of Candidates[a] Number of Votes Elected Change in seats[b]  % of Seats  % of Votes
Social Liberal Union (Uniunea Social Liberală - USL)[c] 137 4,439,884 122
ACS: 63
PNL: 51
PC: 8
Increase 45 69.32% 60.07%
Right Romania Alliance (Alianța România Dreaptă - ARD)[d] 137 1,236,144 24
PDL: 22
FC: 1
PNȚCD: 1
Decrease 27 13.64% 16.72%
People's Party - Dan Diaconescu (Partidul Poporului - Dan Diaconescu - PP-DD) 136 1,081,601 21 Increase 21 11.93% 14.63%
Hungarian Democratic Union of Romania (Uniunea Democrată Maghiară din România - UDMR) 137 388,372 9 Steady 5.11% 5,25%
Greater Romania Party (Partidul România Mare - PRM) 89 108,911 0 Steady 1,47%
Ecologist Party of Romania (Partidul Ecologist Român - PER) 49 58,179 0 Steady 0.78%
Hungarian People's Party of Transylvania (Partidul Popular Maghiar din Transilvania-Erdélyi Magyar Néppárt - PPMT) 40 58,754 0 Steady 0.79%
People's Party (Partidul Popular - PP) 20 11,681 0 Steady 0.15%
Socialist Alliance Party (Partidul Alianța Socialistă - PAS) 7 2,171 0 Steady 0.02%
Popular and Social Protection Party (Partidul Popular și al Protecției Sociale - PPPS) 2 2,100 0 Steady 0.02%
Workers' Social Democratic Party (Partidul Social Democrat al Muncitorilor - PSDM) 3 1,380 0 Steady 0.01%
Independent candidate (Candidat independent) - Constantin Conțac 1 728 0 Steady 0.00%
National Democratic Christian Party (Partidul Național Democrat Creștin - PNDC) 1 132 0 Steady 0.00%
Invalid votes 185,278  %
Blank votes 90,246  %
Total valid votes 7,390,037 176 100.00%
TOTAL (16,269,839 Expected voters)[f] 759 7,666,169 176 Increase 39 100.00% 47,11%
Turnout
Notes
  1. ^ The law does not limit the number of colleges that a candidate can run in. Thus one party may be represented in the whole country by the same candidate in all the colleges in all the constituencies;
  2. ^ The values are calculated considering the 2008 election results, not the seating at the end of the legislature;
  3. ^ In 2008, PSD, and PC on one hand, and PNL on the other hand, ran as separate entities, as PSD+PC, respectively as PNL. The seats shown are calculated using the sum of the individual seats won in 2008 by the two candidate parties. The UNPR was founded in early 2010 as a split from the PSD, around the former Minister of Administration and Interior Gabriel Oprea. After the 2012 local election, in September 2012, UNPR joined USL;
  4. ^ The seats are calculated considering the seating obtained by PDL after the 2008 legislative election, as PDL is the main party of the alliance.
  5. ^ There is a break in the PNȚCD leadership: former PM Victor Ciorbea was recognised by the Bucharest Courthouse as party president, but Aurelian Pavelescu, ally of former party president Marian Miluț, still holds control over the party headquarters and official seals. The Pavelescu fraction of the PNȚCD is a member of the ARD;
  6. ^ http://www.presseurop.eu/en/content/news-brief/3943131-basescu-sacked-census
Source: Biroul Electoral Central



Chamber of Deputies[edit]

The results for the Chamber of Deputies
e • d Summary of the 9 December 2012 Chamber of Deputies of Romania election results
Parties and alliances Number of Candidates[a] Number of Votes Elected Change in seats[b] % of Seats % of Votes
Social Liberal Union (Uniunea Social Liberală - USL)[c] 315 4,327,475 273
ACS: 159
PNL: 101
PC: 13
Increase 94 66.26% 58.61%
Right Romania Alliance (Alianța România Dreaptă - ARD)[d] 315 1,219,973 56
PDL: 52
FC: 3
PNȚCD: 1
Decrease 59 13.59% 16.52%
People's Party - Dan Diaconescu (Partidul Poporului - Dan Diaconescu - PP-DD) 314 1,032,208 47 Increase 47 11.41% 13.98%
Hungarian Democratic Union of Romania (Uniunea Democrată Maghiară din România - UDMR) 315 380.513 18 Decrease 4 4.37% 5,15%
Greater Romania Party (Partidul România Mare - PRM) 197 92,239 0 Steady 1.24%
Ecologist Party of Romania (Partidul Ecologist Român - PER) 128 58,051 0 Steady 0.78%
Hungarian People's Party of Transylvania (Partidul Popular Maghiar din Transilvania-Erdélyi Magyar Néppárt - PPMT) 37 47,955 0 Steady 0.64%
Democratic Forum of Germans of Romania (Forumul Democrat al Germanilor din România - FDGR) 1 39,068 1 Steady 0.24% 0.52%
Social Democratic Roma Party of Romania (Partida Romilor Social Democrată din România - PRPE) 1 21,771 1 Steady 0.24% 0.29%
Union of Macedonians of Romania (Asociaţia Macedonenilor din România - MSR) 1 12,138 1 Steady 0.24% 0.16%
Union of Armenians of Romania (Uniunea Armenilor din România - UAR) 1 10,691 1 Steady 0.24% 0.14%
Bulgarian Union of the Banat - Romania (Uniunea Bulgară din Banat - România - UBBR) 1 10,100 1 Steady 0.24% 0.13%
League of Albanians of Romania (Liga Albanezilor din România - LAR) 1 9,967 1 Steady 0.24% 0.13%
Federation of Jewish Communities of Romania (Federaţia Comunităţilor Evreieşti din România - FCER) 1 9,967 1 Steady 0.24% 0.13%
Greek Union of Romania (Uniunea Elenă din România - UER) 1 9,827 1 Steady 0.24% 0.13%
People's Party (Partidul Popular - PP) 41 9,319 0 Steady 0.12%
Democratic Union of Turco-Islamic Tatars of Romania (Uniunea Democrată a Tătarilor Turco-Musulmani din România - UDTTR) 1 9,236 1 Steady 0.24% 0.12%
Democratic Union of Slovaks and Czechs in Romania (Uniunea Democratică a Slovacilor şi Cehilor din România - UDSCR) 1 8,573 1 Steady 0.24% 0.11%
Lipovenian Russian Community of Romania (Comunitatea Ruşilor Lipoveni din România - CRLR) 1 8,295 1 Steady 0.24% 0.11%
Union of Serbs of Romania (Uniunea Sârbilor din România - USR) 1 8,046 1 Steady 0.24% 0.10%
Union of Poles of Romania (Uniunea Polonezilor din România - UPR') 1 7,986 1 Steady 0.24% 0.10%
Association of Italians of Romania (Asociaţia Italienilor din România - RO.AS.IT) 1 7,872 1 Steady 0.24% 0.10%
Union of Ukrainians of Romania (Uniunea Ucrainienilor din România - UUR) 1 7,302 1 Steady 0.24% 0.09%
Turkish Democratic Union of Romania (Uniunea Democrată Turcă din România - UDTR) 1 7,291 1 Steady 0.24% 0.09%
Union of Croatians of Romania (Uniunea Croaţilor din România - UCR) 1 6,252 1 Steady 0.24% 0.08%
Cultural Union of Ruthenians of Romania (Uniunea Culturală a Rutenilor din România - UCRR) 1 5,203 1 Steady 0.24% 0.07%
Socialist Alliance Party (Partidul Alianța Socialistă - PAS) 13 2,331 0 Steady 0.03%
Popular and Social Protection Party (Partidul Popular și al Protecției Sociale - PPPS) 6 929 0 Steady 0.01%
Workers' Social Democratic Party (Partidul Social Democrat al Muncitorilor - PSDM) 2 231 0 Steady 0.00%
National Democratic Christian Party (Partidul Național Democrat Creștin - PNDC) 1 38 0 Steady 0.00%
Independent candidates (Candidați independenți) 12 12,389 0 Steady 0.16%
Invalid votes 211,243  %
Blank votes 70,782  %
Total valid votes 7,383,236 412[f] 100.00% 100.00%
TOTAL (16,269,839 Expected voters)[g] 1714 7,666,169 412 Increase 78 47,11%
Turnout
Notes
  1. ^ The law does not limit the number of colleges that a candidate can run in. Thus one party may be represented in the whole country by the same candidate in all the colleges in all the constituencies;
  2. ^ The values are calculated considering the 2008 election results, not the seating at the end of the legislature;
  3. ^ In 2008, PSD, and PC on one hand, and PNL on the other hand, ran as separate entities, as PSD+PC, respectively as PNL. The seats shown are calculated using the sum of the individual seats won in 2008 by the two candidate parties. The UNPR was founded in early 2010 as a split from the PSD, around the former Minister of Administration and Interior Gabriel Oprea. After the 2012 local election, in September 2012, UNPR joined USL;
  4. ^ The seats are calculated considering the seating obtained by PDL after the 2008 legislative election, as PDL is the main party of the alliance.
  5. ^ There is a break in the PNȚCD leadership: former PM Victor Ciorbea was recognised by the Bucharest Courthouse as party president, but Aurelian Pavelescu, ally of former party president Marian Miluț, still holds control over the party headquarters and official seals. The Pavelescu fraction of the PNȚCD is a member of the ARD;
  6. ^ There are 315 seats in single seat electoral college that are grouped in multi-seat constituencies. The ethnic minorities representatives' seats are added to that number, if they pass the special threshold. Seats are added in constituencies where Romanians are a minority and one candidate has passed a different special threshold; same rule applies to other ethnic minorities. In 2008 a seat was added for UDMR to keep the proportionality of the vote;
  7. ^ http://www.presseurop.eu/en/content/news-brief/3943131-basescu-sacked-census;
Source: Biroul Electoral Central



Local referendums[edit]

Two local non-binding referendums were also organized on 9 December, concerning environmental issues.[6]

The first one took place in Alba county and people were asked whether they were in favor or against the Roșia Montană mining project. Although 62% of those who voted voiced support for the controversial project, the referendum not meet the required turnout of 50%, as only 43,2% of voters turned up.[6]

The second referendum was held in the communes of Limanu, Costinești as well as in the city of Mangalia and asked voters to say whether they were in favor or against the use, by Chevron, of shale gas extraction by means of hydraulic fracturing. This referendum failed to meet the required turnout as well.[6]

Incidents[edit]

Although a report by the OSCE stated the elections were administered "professionally and efficiently",[7] the electioneering, initiated on 9 November and ended on 8 December, was not without incidents.

Dan Diaconescu, candidate from PP-DD in the same college of Chamber of Deputies in Târgu Jiu with Prime Minister Victor Ponta, is investigated for electoral bribery.[8] Authorities were notified after PSD representatives within Gorj County Council filed a complaint regarding the distribution of food and the organization of an electoral spectacle before the electioneering.[9] According to the Emergency Ordinance issued on 6 November by Ponta Cabinet, offering food, drink and money in the campaign is illegal.[10]

On 11 November, an old man from the commune of Mătăsari (Gorj County) had a heart attack shortly after a discussion in contradictory with PDL deputy Constantin Severus Militaru.[11] PDL deputy said that the old man was very indignant because his pension was not recalculated, although he had worked all his life in mining.[12]

The President of PDL Vrancea, Alin Trășculescu, was caught in the act by anticorruption prosecutors while receiving € 50,000 from a businessman in the form of bribe.[13] He was detained for 24 hours for allegations of lobbyism, instigation to false and incitement to the misdemeanor of money laundering.[14] Alin Trășculescu was under the supervision of National Anticorruption Department for two years. He claimed he could get contracts with the State, from the Ministry of Development and Tourism, led then by Elena Udrea.

References[edit]

  1. ^ Antena3.ro – Interactive map of the Romanian legislative election, 2012
  2. ^ "First Victim of the 2012 elections: Right Romania dissolves right after election day". 11 December 2012. Retrieved 12 December 2012. 
  3. ^ http://www.euractiv.com/elections/romanian-government-falls-plus-change-analysis-510695
  4. ^ http://derstandard.at/1336697749143/Radikales-Wahlrecht-beschlossen
  5. ^ http://www.bloomberg.com/news/2012-06-27/romanian-constitutional-court-overturns-changes-to-election-law.html
  6. ^ a b c "Lower than needed turnout for local referendums on environmental impact of projects in Romania". Romania Insider. 11 December 2012. Retrieved 11 December 2012. 
  7. ^ "OSCE/ODIHR Election Expert Team Final Report". January 16, 2013. Retrieved January 18, 2013. 
  8. ^ "Dan Diaconescu, investigated because he bribed voters with mititei and biscuits. The defendant answers: «Ponta is envious!»", Evz.ro
  9. ^ "Dan Diaconescu, investigated for mititei and biscuits!, Libertatea.ro
  10. ^ "Government approved the Emergency Ordinance on offering food, drink and money in the campaign", HotNews.ro
  11. ^ "An old man from Gorj has died after a dispute with a PDL deputy", Adevărul.ro
  12. ^ "First incident in the electioneering! Old man dead in Gorj after a dispute with a deputy!", Libertatea.ro
  13. ^ "PDL deputy Alin Trășculescu, accused that demanded 150,000 euros bribe, to intervene in the government", România Liberă
  14. ^ "PDL deputy Alin Trășculescu, detained for 24 hours. DNA accused him of lobbyism, instigation to false in documents and money laundering", Gândul.info