Vote boosts ruling party

Published on 24 October 2011 at 11:41


"No surprises," headlines Bulgarian daily Dnevnik, summing up the results of the first round of presidential and local elections held on October 23. In the presidential race, Rossen Plevneliev, candidate of the ruling conservative GERB (Citizens for the European Development of Bulgaria), garnered 40% of the vote, giving him a 10 point lead over his main rival, Socialist [formerly Communist] Ivailo Kalfin. Prime Minister Boyko Borisov "comes out the winner" along with his GERB party for winning in the local elections as of the first round in several cities, including Sofia, the paper notes. The "clash" of the second round, on October 30, should not be underestimated, however, the paper warns. Plevneliev could run into problems if his rival manages to rally all of the protest vote, it says. [This analysis is shared by daily Trud](http://, which sees the GERB as the "main political force in the country" at mid-term. Yet, "the second round ballot is forecast as very difficult," the paper says, adding that Ahmed Dogan, the leader of the Movement for Rights and Freedom, which represents Bulgaria'sTurkish-speaking community, has already called for his supporters to vote Socialists next Sunday.

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