The European Elections Monitor

Open panel Open panel
The European Elections Monitor
Politics and democracy
Romania - Presidential Election

Klaus Iohannis, re-elected president of the Republic in Romania

Klaus Iohannis, re-elected president of the Republic in Romania

26/11/2019 - Results - 2nd round

Outgoing head of State, Klaus Iohannis was re-elected as President of the Republic of Romania for a second term following a second round of voting on 24th November. He won 65.88% of the vote and beat Viorica Dancila (Social Democratic Party, PSD), who won 34.12%. He was already ahead after the first round, which took place on 10th November, with 37.82% of the vote (22.26% for V. Dancila).

"Modern Romania, European Romania, normal Romania has won" said Klaus Iohannis when the results were announced. The outgoing president had called on Romanians to vote "so that Romania can breathe at last (...), and against the Social Democratic Party which has dominated the political stage for the last thirty years, and which has tried to control the legal system and subjugate all of the institutions."

"Romania has won. A special tribute goes the Romanians of the diaspora who turned out to ballot in extraordinary numbers. It is a major victory, the most categoric ever won over the Social Democratic Party. We must hold this party well away from the controls for many years (...) so that a normal Romania can be built, where we can feel at home," he added.

Romanians living abroad (i.e. about 4 million people) turned out in great number to vote (900,000) and gave their support to the outgoing President (nearly 90% of the vote within this electorate). Klaus Iohannis also won the majority of votes amongst the middle classes, the youngest and the most educated.

Moreover, the outgoing head of State enjoyed the support of Dan Barna, the leader of the Save Romania Union 'USR' who came third in the first round of the election with 15.02% of the vote.

Turnout was much lower than that previously recorded in the second round of the previous presidential election on 16th November 2014, totalling 54.46% i.e. 9.64 points less.

Viorica Dancila and the Social Democratic Party suffered a heavy defeat. Never has a Social Democratic candidate won as low a score in the presidential election. "I know that many would like me to resign from office but this time I shall not leave because I believe that the consolidation of our party in view of the local elections is much more important than the political tension and divisions which are tearing the party apart," declared Viorica Dancila. She was Prime Minister from January 2018 to 10th October last, when her government collapsed following a vote of no confidence in Parliament.

Five days later Klaus Iohannis appointed Ludovic Orban, the National Liberal Party leader (PNL) as Prime Minister. The minority government that he formed won the confidence of Parliament on 4th November.

Results of the presidential election on 10th and 24th November in Romania
Turnout: 47.77% (1st round) and 54,46% (2nd round)
Congress of Deputies

Source: et

Aged 60, Klaus Iohannis comes from Sibiu, a town of which he became the mayor in 2000 - and the first mayor of German origin since Alfred Dörr, who was the Mayor of Sibiu from 1940 and 1945. Elected regularly and four times successively, Klaus Iohannis, who is a member of the German minority of Romania, completely transformed his town by renewing its infrastructures, restoring its historic centre and by turning it into a privileged tourist destination.

A graduate in physics from the University of Babes-Bolyai of Cluj, Klaus Iohannis first taught physics, before becoming a primary education inspector. He joined the Democratic Forum of Germans of Romania in 1990 and then in 2013 the National Liberal Party (PNL), of which he became chair on 28th June 2014.

On 16th November 2014, he was elected President of the Republic and took over from Traian Basescu at the Cotroceni Palace, the residence of the Presidents of the Republic in Bucharest.
Publishing Director: Pascale JOANNIN
The author
Corinne Deloy
Author of the European Elections Monitor (EEM) for the Robert Schuman Foundation and project manager at the Institute for Political Studies (Sciences Po).
Other stages
2nd roundResults