On November 14th Bulgaria held its third round of parliamentary elections after the first two rounds took place in April and July, and did not result in the forming of a government.
For the first time in the history of the country the parliamentary elections coincided with the presidential elections. The incumbent president Rumen Radev a former army general ran against Anastas Gherdzhikov a university professor. Neither candidate was able to receive a majority of the vote so a second round of elections will be held on November 21st. The polls indicate President Radev as the winner.
The parliamentary elections seemed more interesting since the results showed the newly formed political party. “We continue the Change” as the first runner up with 25% of the votes. GERB, the party of the former PM Boyko Borissov came second with 22% of the votes. The results for the Bulgarian Socialist Party were a disaster. They came in forth position with a little over 10% of the votes.
But is this surprising victory for the newly formed “We Continue the Change” and its leaders. “The Harvard brothers” as they are called, something new, or it is just following the tradition of Bulgarians voting for the most appealing saviors? Are the Harvard educated Kiril Petkov and Asen Vasilev able to bring real change to Bulgaria? And how could we interpret the catastrophic fall of the Bulgarian Socialist Party? How come Bulgaria and other Eastern European countries are so prone to accept the idea that it is the fault of the corrupt Bulgarians, and not that of the system for the civilizational downgrade they experience?
Maria Cernat and Boyan Stanislavski invited journalist and activist Georgi Hristov and sociologist and researcher Stefan Georgiev to discuss the results of the Bulgarian parliamentary elections and their complex political and social meaning and implications.
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