Presidential elections begin in Romania

img79The presidential elections began on Sunday morning in Romania, over 18 million eligible voters are expected to turn to polls to elect a new president for the next five-year term.

A number of 12 candidates entered the race for the state’s top position.

The incumbent President Traian Basescu is running for a second term, with the backing of the Liberal Democratic Party. The main political parties have nominated their leaders for the presidential race: Mircea Geoana runs on behalf of the Social Democratic Party; Crin Antonescu — for the National Liberal Party; Corneliu Vadim Tudor — for the Greater Romania Party; Kelemen Hunor — for the Hungarian Democratic Union of Romania and Gigi Becali — for the Christian Democratic New Generation Party, while Bucharest Mayor Sorin Oprescu runs as an independent.

The best-ranked candidates in the opinion polls are Basescu, Geoana and Antonescu.

Under the Constitution, the President is elected for a 5-year term, renewable once; two successive terms are allowed.

Romania has been in a political gridlock since mid-October, when its democrat liberal government was ousted in a no-confidence vote in Parliament, the first in the 20 years after the fall of the communist regime.

President Traian Basescu failed to win Parliament support for a new prime minister and the country will likely not to have a legitimate government in place before the election runoff scheduled for December 6.

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