The WatchDog.MD Community and CBS Research have presented the results of a survey on perceptions of political preferences and the impact of misinformation

Apr 16, 2024

On April 16, a public opinion survey was released, conducted by the Center for Sociological and Marketing Research “CBS-Research,” commissioned by the Community for Advocacy and Public Policy “WatchDog.MD.”

The survey contains a series of questions regarding the political preferences of citizens – the level of trust in political leaders and voting preferences for future parliamentary and presidential elections. The questions posed to respondents focus on social and political aspects, those regarding foreign policy, European integration, and other subjects. The survey includes multiple questions targeting the impact of disinformation and propaganda on public opinion in the Republic of Moldova. In particular, a still high impact of Kremlin propaganda on security-related issues is noted.

According to the survey, 41% of respondents believe that things in the country are heading in the right direction, while 45% believe they are heading in the wrong direction. The optimistic perception predominates among Romanian-speaking respondents. Among politicians, the highest level of trust is attributed to Maia Sandu – 46%, followed by Ion Ceban with 37% and Igor Dodon with 36%. The highest level of distrust is recorded for Ilan Shor with 66%, followed by Igor Dodon with 61%, and Vladimir Voronin with 60% of respondents saying they have little or no trust in them. In the event of parliamentary elections, nearly 72% of voters have expressed a voting option, 7% said they would not participate in the elections, others declared themselves undecided or did not wish to respond. According to the survey, 4 parties have a high chance of passing the electoral threshold – PAS (41.5%), PSRM (23%), Chance (Șansa) (8.5%), PCRM (7%). The authors urge the press and commentators to be very cautious in interpreting these data. In the case of presidential elections, the clear leaders of the competition are Maia Sandu (35% of total) and Igor Dodon (16% of total respondents). In the event of a second round of voting, the current president would emerge victorious in competition with Igor Dodon, Ion Ceban, or Irina Vlah.

In the case of a referendum on EU accession, 56% would vote in favor, while 25% would vote against, others declare themselves undecided or say they would not participate. 35% would vote in a referendum for accession to the Eurasian Union, while 47.5% would vote against. Between the EU and the Eurasian Union, 54% would choose the EU and 25% would choose the Eurasian Union.

48% of respondents consider Russia to be a threat to the Republic of Moldova, and this figure is slightly increasing. On security issues, the influence of Russian propaganda narratives still persists. For example, almost 47% believe that neutrality status could protect Moldova from a military aggression, while 41% believe it cannot.

A less commonly measured aspect in surveys is the possibility of a referendum on Moldova’s entry into Russia. 26% expressed favorably to this option, while 57.5% said they would vote against it.

Almost 23% of respondents stated that they hold Romanian citizenship. This projection will likely be verified based on census data. Of these, just over half stated that they would vote in the three Romanian elections (European Parliament, presidential, and parliamentary). In the presidential elections, the vast majority are undecided (44%) or say they will not vote (23%) when asked to choose from a list of candidates. Among those who still chose an option, the clear leader in the preferences of voters with Romanian citizenship in the Republic of Moldova is NATO Deputy Secretary-General Mircea Geoană – 52%, followed by a significant margin by Romanian Prime Minister Marcel Ciolacu – 17% and Senator Diana Șoșoacă (15%).

The survey was conducted as part of the project “Maintaining the Resistance of Democratic Institutions in the Republic of Moldova,” implemented by the “WatchDog.MD” Community with the support of the Open Society Foundation. The results and conclusions do not represent the position of the donor.

The entire socio-political survey was broadcast live on: , and the entire study can also be accessed through the active link: Open the study here & Presentation here.

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