Bulgaria’s 2021 elections: Seven-group Parliament possible, going by Exacta poll

A poll by the Exacta Research Group, the results of which were released on November 12, found that Boiko Borissov’s GERB-UDF coalition is set for the largest share of the vote in Sunday’s early parliamentary elections, while there is a tight contest over which party will get the second-largest.

According to the poll, GERB-UDF has 24 per cent support among those intending to vote on November 14, in Bulgaria’s third parliamentary elections this year.

The Kiril Petkov-Assen Vassilev We Continue the Change (WCC) party has 16.2 per cent and the Bulgarian Socialist Party (BSP) 15.5 per cent, Exacta said.

In fourth place is cable television presenter Slavi Trifonov’s ITN party with 11.5 per cent, followed by the Movement for Rights and Freedoms with 9.9 per cent and the Democratic Bulgaria coalition with 9.6 per cent.

The poll found that Maya Manolova’s “Rise Up Bulgaria! We’re Coming” coalition has four per cent, the threshold to win a share of seats in the next National Assembly.

The pro-Russian Vuzrazhdane party is not far below the threshold, with 3.4 per cent.

This is Exacta’s third poll since the start of the official campaign period ahead of the November 14 elections. The agency said that there had been a gradual expansion of electoral support for GERB over that time.

Exacta said that BSP voters were highly mobilised, but turnout was unpredictable because of the current wave of Covid-19 in Bulgaria.

The question remained which part of the electorate WCC would be able to mobilise, the agency said.

Both the BSP and WCC had slightly increased their electoral weight in the final week of the campaign, and it was difficult to say which would be second and which third, Exacta said.

Exacta said that it was possible, given the record of recent months, that there was a “hidden vote” for ITN.

The agency said that in the final days of the campaign, “Rise Up Bulgaria! We’re Coming” had solidified its electorate and, more importantly, contained the outflow of support to other parties.

Exacta said that a few days before the vote, there had been a contraction in the share of voters who were determined to vote on Sunday, with the number returning to where it was at the start of the campaign.

It said that this was a reflection of the way the campaign had gone in recent weeks, with statements “close to political hysteria”, insults of political opponents and a lack of debate between leading politicians on topics of primary interest to the public.

The agency said that recent events had raised doubts among some voters about the fairness of the vote. At the beginning of November, 49 per cent of Bulgarians believed that the elections would be fair. This had shrunk to 43 per cent.

BSP voters were most convinced of the fairness of the vote: 77 per cent. GERB voters least believed that the elections would be fair: 18 per cent.

The poll indicated a possible voter turnout of 47 to 48 per cent.

The Exacta Research Group poll was done from November 6 to 9 among 1025 adult Bulgarian citizens in 91 settlements. The poll used a stratified two-stage sample with quotas for main socio-demographic characteristics, which reproduces the structure of the population by place of residence, gender and age. The methodology was a direct semi-standardised face to face interview. The margin of error is plus-minus three per cent. The poll was funded by Exacta Research Group.

(Photo: parliament.bg)

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