VP Front-Runner: Bulgaria Said Yes to Reforms in Tough Times

Presidental & Local Elections 2011 | October 23, 2011, Sunday // 23:58|  views

Margarita Popova. Photo by Sofia Photo Agency

Margarita Popova, candidate for vice president from the ruling Bulgarian centrist-right GERB's presidential couple, says their lead is support for unpopular reforms in tough times.

Bulgaria's former construction minister Rosen Plevneliev and Margarita Popova from the center-right party GERB of PM Boyko Borisov emerged as the leaders in Sunday's presidential elections.

However, Plevneliev failed to win outright and avoid a runoff in a week in Sunday's vote, whose turnout reached 47% first polls results show.

He has been forced into a second round with Ivaylo Kalfin, a former Foreign Minister from the opposition Socialist Party.

The result comes as no surprise as all polls had said that none of the 18 presidential candidates would manage to get more than 50% of the vote, and a runoff will be required on Oct. 30.

Plevneliev garnered 41.4% of the votes, according to Gallup polls, released by private bTV channel immediately after the last polling station closed at 7 p.m.

In the run-off next week, Plevneliev will face Ivaylo Kalfin, who won 26.8 % of the votes.

Plevneliev's other main rival, independent Meglena Kuneva, a former European Union commissioner, ranked third with 15.6 of the votes.

Plevneliev is running together with former Justice Minister Margarita Popova. His huge lead was facilitated by the lack of a real challenger in Bulgaria's opposition.

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Tags: voter turnout, Rumen Hristov, Svetlyo Vitkov, GERB, Bulgarian Socialist Party, BSP, Volen Siderov, Meglena Kuneva, run-off, 2011 elections, elections 2011, Presidential elections, Ivaylo Kalfin, Rosen Plevneliev, Margarita Popova


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