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Romanian Social-Liberals Keep Lead in Opinion Polls, IMAS Shows

May 31 (Bloomberg) -- Romania’s Social Democrats and the Liberals, who back Prime Minister Victor Ponta, kept their lead in opinion polls before local and general elections this year, a new survey found.

The two parties, who now form the Social-Liberal Union and will run together in elections, would win 59.4 percent, according to the May 9-15 survey of 1,038 people, Adevarul newspaper reported. It had a margin of error of 3 percentage points.

Support for the current governing parties decreased from 61 percent in a May 2 poll done by pollster IRES and is higher than the 48.4 percent result the two parties had in an IMAS poll done in March, before Ponta took office. The former ruling Liberal Democratic Party would get 14.5 percent of the votes, down from 15 percent in May 2, the survey showed.

The new People’s Party, founded by media owner Dan Diaconescu, would garner 12.8 percent of the votes, compared with 10 percent in the previous poll. The opposition Democratic Union of Hungarians in Romania, an ethnic minority party, would get 5.5 percent, up from 4 percent.

Ponta, a former prosecutor, gained Parliament’s support for his new government on May 7 after his Social democrats and the Liberals ousted former Prime Minister Mihai-Razvan Ungureanu in a no-confidence vote held less than three months after he came to power. The new Cabinet pledged to continue Romania’s precautionary accord with the International Monetary Fund and the European Union and partly restored public-sector wages after a 25 percent cut in June 2010.

Romania plans to hold local elections on June 10, with general elections probably following in November.

To contact the reporter on this story: Andra Timu in Bucharest at

To contact the editor responsible for this story: James M. Gomez at

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