European Parliament election, 2007 (Bulgaria)
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Bulgaria elected its members of the European Parliament in a by-election on 20 May 2007. It was the country's first European election, having joined the Union on 1 January of that year. The country still had 18 MEPs, no change from before the election. Until Bulgaria could hold these elections, the country was represented by MEPs appointed by the National Assembly.
The top two parties - GERB and Bulgarian Socialist Party (BSP) - won 5 seats each, followed by the Movement for Rights and Freedoms (DPS) with four, Ataka with three, and National Movement Simeon II (NDSV) with one. Voter turnout was 28.6%.
It was considered likely that the result of the election would cause a major political crisis in Bulgaria, due to the expected weak results of the National Movement.
Controversially, the eligible voters were limited to citizens of Bulgaria and the EU with their permanent and current address within the Union and a minimum of 60 days of the last three months before the elections spent within its borders. Because of this requirement, 232,800 people were rendered ineligible to vote, 185,000 of whom were Turkish Bulgarians resident in Turkey.
The following parties contested the elections:
- Coalition of the Bulgarian Agrarian People's Union
- Communist Party of Bulgaria
- Coalition of Bulgarian Social Democrats (Party of Bulgarian Social Democrats, Political Movement "Social Democrats")
- Civil Union for New Bulgaria
- Democrats for a Strong Bulgaria
- European Socialists Platform (Bulgarian Socialist Party, Movement for Social Humanism)
- Green Party of Bulgaria
- Movement for Rights and Freedoms
- National Movement Simeon II
- Order, Law and Justice
- Union of the Democratic Forces
- Union of Free Democrats
- two independents
The People's First Movement had registered to contest the election, but were refused by the Central Electoral Commission.
The five Bulgarian nurses sentenced to death and the Bulgarian doctor who received a lighter sentence in the HIV trial in Libya were slated to stand as the six leading candidates on the list of the populist Order, Law and Justice Party – to put pressure on Libya to release the nurses and to postpone their execution because of the immunity they would have as MEPs. They were refused by the Central Electoral Commission, however, as they did not meet the residency requirements.
18 MEPs were appointed by Bulgaria to serve as observers in the Parliament before the country joined on 1 January 2007. Those observers then functioned as Bulgaria's appointed delegation to the European Parliament until elections were held on 20 May 2007. The breakdown of parties and their European Parliament political groups for the period 1 January 2007 to 20 May 2007 was as follows:
|Bulgarian Socialist Party||PES||6|
|National Movement Simeon II||ALDE||4|
|Movement for Rights and Freedoms||ALDE||3|
|Union of Democratic Forces||EPP-ED||2|
|Democrats for a Strong Bulgaria||EPP-ED||1|
|Bulgarian People's Union||EPP-ED||1|
|2007 • 2009 →|
|National party||European party||Leader(s)||Votes||%||+/–||Seats||+/–|
|Coalition for Bulgaria (KB)||PES||414,786||21.41||—||—|
|Movement for Rights and Freedoms (DPS)||ELDR||392,650||20.26||—||—|
|National Movement Simeon II||ELDR||121,398||6.27||—||—|
|Union of Democratic Forces||EPP||91,871||4.74||—||0||—|
|Democrats for a Strong Bulgaria||EPP||84,350||4.35||—||0||—|
| Coalition of Bulgarian Social Democrats
(Party of Bulgarian Social Democrats, Political Movement "Social Democrats")
|Agrarian National Union||EPP||29,752||1.54||—||0||—|
|Union of Free Democrats||None||14,392||0.74||—||0||—|
|Civil Union for New Bulgaria||None||9,398||0.49||—||0||—|
|Order, Law and Justice (RZS)||None||9,147||0.47||—||0||—|
|Mariya Stoyanova Serkedzhieva (independent)||None||5,323||0.27||—||0||—|
|Nikola Petkov Ivanov (independent)||None||2,782||0.14||—||0||—|
|Sources: Izbori2007.eu, Europarl|
The official results were announced by the Central Electoral Commission on 21 May. According to the official data, the winner of the elections was GERB, followed by a small margin by the Bulgarian Socialist Party and the Movement for Rights and Freedoms, with the distance between the third and the first being less than 1.5%. The voter turnout was 28.6%.
According to the election results, the following 18 candidates were elected as Bulgarian Members of the European Parliament:
- GERB (5)
- Bulgarian Socialist Party (5)
- Movement for Rights and Freedoms (4)
- Attack (3)
- National Movement Simeon II (1)
- "Bulgarien: EU-Wahl wird Zerreißprobe für Sofia «". Diepresse.com. Retrieved 2010-04-02.
- "185 000 изселници в Турция извън избирателните списъци за евровота". mediapool.bg. Retrieved 2010-04-02.
- "People's Daily Online - Bulgarian parties, independent runners ready for EP voting". English.people.com.cn. 2007-04-15. Retrieved 2010-04-02.
- M3 Web - http://m3web.bg (2007-03-29). "Bulgaria: Bulgaria's Jailed Nurses Top MEP Ticket". Novinite.com. Sofia News Agency. Retrieved 2010-04-02.
- "News.bg - ГЕРБ и БСП с по 5-има евродепутати, обяви официално ЦИК". News.ibox.bg. Retrieved 2010-04-02.
- Elections in Bulgaria
- Elections in the European Union
- European Parliament election, 2007
- European Parliament election, 2007 (Romania)
- Bulgaria (European Parliament constituency)
- Weak turnout marks European elections in Bulgaria euractiv.com 21/05/07
- Bulgaria's First European Vote novinite.com
- Bulgaria elects new MEPs amid corruption worries EUobserver 21/05/07
- Results izbori2007.eu (Bulgarian)
- Seats news.ibox.bg (Bulgarian)