There Will Be a Second Round in the Most Big Cities
There will be a second round in Sofia and a number of regional cities. GERB remains the strongest party, the BSP improves its results and goes on a run-off in a number of regional cities. The big surprise of the vote is the breakthrough of the independent candidate Boris Bonev in Sofia. At the same time, Bulgaria rejected national populists.
There is a sure runoff in Sofia that will feature two ladies - current Mayor Yordanka Fandakova with 32.8% and former Ombudsman Maya Manolova with 23.1%. The difference between the two in the first round is about 10%. Borislav Ignatov from Democratic Bulgaria ranks third by 13.6% and Boris Bonev from Spasi Sofia by 13.1%. Support for nationalists Angel Dzhambazki and Volen Siderov was extremely low.
GERB has the highest percent (30.4%) in the City Council, followed by Democratic Bulgaria (15.5%) and BSP (14.5%), according to the Trend Agency exit poll.
GERB won Burgas, Stara Zagora and Veliko Turnovo in the first round. The former mayors Dimitar Nikolov, Zhivko Todorov and Daniel Panov were re-elected there. The fate of Varna is still unclear, where there is a likelihood of a run-off between the incumbent Mayor Ivan Portnih of GERB and Prof. Anelia Klisarova from BSP. The support for Ivan Portnih ranges between 49-50%, according to exit polls.
The situation is similar in Kardzhali, which has been managed by the MRF since the beginning of the century. It also receives between 49.9 and 50.4%, according to various exit polls. Late in the evening, however, the MRF declared Hasan Azis the winner of the first round, according to a party's own data, and in Kardzhali they started celebrating without waiting for official results. GERB goes on a a second round in Plovdiv, where their candidate Zdravko Dimitrov leads the first round. Initially, it appeared that his opponent would be Dani Kanazireva from Union for Plovdiv, but just hours after the first results it became clear that Slavcho Atanasov was the second and that he would face a run-off against the GERB candidate. BSP improves its position compared to 2015 local elections when the Left registered its lowest results in decades, leading in Ruse, where its candidate Pencho Milkov leads by 32.1% against GERB candidate Diana Ivanova (24.9%). There will also be a second round in Blagoevgrad.
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