Basescu appears to be winner of Romanian presidential race

Incumbent President Traian Basescu won the Romanian presidential runoff, near final results showed Monday, in an election Romanians hope will pull the country out of its worst political and economic crisis in 20 years.

BUCHAREST, Romania — Incumbent President Traian Basescu won the Romanian presidential runoff, near final results showed Monday, in an election Romanians hope will pull the country out of its worst political and economic crisis in 20 years.

With 95.7 per cent of the vote counted, election authorities said centrist Basescu polled 50.43 per cent of the vote, while former foreign minister Mircea Geoana received 49.57 per cent.

Both Basescu and Geoana claimed victory late Sunday after polls closed. Three exit polls gave Geoana, a Socialist, a slight lead.

Geoana, a leader of the Social Democrats who has branded himself a unifier and team builder, declared himself the winner Sunday, calling exit poll results “a victory for normalcy, a victory for decency, for all citizens who want a better life.”

But Basescu claimed the exit polls were deceptive.

“You will see the manipulations on the television stations . . . Today you can trust me fully when I tell you I won,” he said.

There was no immediate reaction early Monday to official results that apparently reversed the predictions of the opinion polls.

The country faces skyrocketing unemployment and a limping government since the ruling coalition fell apart two months ago amid party squabbling.

Romania is seeking to unlock a C1.5 billion ($2 billion) International Monetary Fund bailout loan to pull it out of its deep recession but is unlikely to get one this year due to its political instability.

Basescu, 58, had seen his popularity drop this year due to the economic downturn and political feuding, but still enjoys support, especially in rural areas and among the working class.

Basescu argues that he will modernize and reform Romania.

Just Posted

Blood donations needed in Central Alberta: Canadian Blood Services

357 donors are needed before Aug. 26 at the Red Deer clinic

Warkentin seeks UCP nomination

Another nominee for Red Deer North

UPDATED: Red Deer air quality risk rated high

Poor air quality and reduced visibility

WATCH: Annual Family Picnic at Central Spray and Play

Blue Grass Sod Farms Ltd. held the Annual Family Picnic at the… Continue reading

Boy, 11, dies after being struck by payloader on southern Alberta ranch

BOW ISLAND, Alta. — A boy has died after an accident on… Continue reading

Liberals look at creating federal holiday to mark legacy of residential schools

OTTAWA — The federal Liberal government wants to establish a holiday to… Continue reading

Thousands of police officers expected at regimental funeral in Fredericton

FREDERICTON — Thousands of police officers and first responders from across the… Continue reading

B.C. declares state of emergency over wildfires

VICTORIA — The British Columbia government has declared a provincial state of… Continue reading

As service refusals make headlines, experts say businesses usually in the wrong

Two Canadian businesses that recently made headlines for refusing customers have learned… Continue reading

Irregular asylum claims increased in July after two months of decline

OTTAWA — The number of irregular border crossers in Canada went up… Continue reading

Knocking down statues no way to address a troubled history, McKenna says

OTTAWA — The minister responsible for Parks Canada says tearing down statues… Continue reading

Turning on Trump doesn’t buy credibility for black Americans

WASHINGTON — For years, Omarosa Manigault Newman stood at Donald Trump’s side,… Continue reading

Most Read


Five-day delivery plus unlimited digital access for $185 for 260 issues (must live in delivery area to qualify) Unlimited Digital Access 99 cents for the first four weeks and then only $15 per month Five-day delivery plus unlimited digital access for $15 a month