Bulgaria: GERB regains leading position, party led by two former caretaker ministers gains 9% voter support ahead of new parliamentary elections

Bulgaria: GERB regains leading position, party led by two former caretaker ministers gains 9% voter support ahead of new parliamentary elections

A Trend survey commissioned by the 24 Chasa newspaper, dedicated to the attitudes of Bulgarians towards the main political forces in the country, shows that the political formation headed by former caretaker ministers Kiril Petkov and Asen Vassilev currently has the support of 9 percent of voters, while GERB is regaining its leading position with a significant lead.

The study was conducted between September 8 and 15 through face-to-face interviews among 1,012 people over the age of 18.

The study took place before Petkov and Vassilev officially announced their political project, which was already in the works, and provided two lists of formations to each respondent, one without and one with the new formation, with the latter being published. Trend notes that thus respondents were put in a hypothetical situation and changes in political dynamics can be expected in the coming weeks once this political project presents its official priorities.

The current electoral snapshot among those declaring that they will vote in the upcoming elections shows a clear lead by GERB with 24.4 percent. Next come There Is Such a People (TISP) with 17.5 percent and the Bulgarian Socialist Party (BSP) with 16.6 percent, followed by the Movement for Rights and Freedoms (MRF) with 9.3 percent, Petkov and Vassilev’s formation (9.1 percent) and Democratic Bulgaria (DB) with 8.5 percent. The third group, which remains below the parliamentary threshold of 4 percent, but with a result of more than one per cent, includes Rise Up BG! Here We Come! (3.8 percent), Vazrazhdane (2.9 percent) and VMRO (2.2 percent).

A total of 53 percent of all interviewees said that they will exercise their right to vote in the upcoming parliamentary elections.

The Trend poll in September registered a record low approval rating for parliament over the past few years. Only 12 percent of all interviewees had a positive opinion about the activities of the last National Assembly, while 77 percent gave a negative assessment.

Analysts also report a slight decline in support for the caretaker government and President Rumen Radev. Some 35 percent are positive about the work of the cabinet, while 44 percent are of the opposite opinion. The positive assessment is 5 percent lower than the previous month. The work of the presidential institution was assessed positively by 46 percent, while 35 percent gave a negative assessment.

The debate over the responsibility for failing to form a regular government has become central in recent weeks, Trend notes. A total of 43 percent of all interviewees are of the opinion that TISP bears the greatest responsibility for not forming a cabinet, while 11 percent blame GERB, 8 percent blame DB, 5 percent blame the BSP, 3 percent blame Rise Up! and one percent blames the MRF.