In a recent statement, political expert Mihai Mogâldea weighed in on the upcoming presidential elections in Moldova, predicting a challenging road ahead for the incumbent president, Maia Sandu. Mogâldea anticipates a formidable opposition coalescing against Sandu, with a clear contender likely to emerge in the next two to three months.
“I don’t think it will be an easy victory; there will certainly be quite a broad opposition to the current president. A position that will coalesce more and more on the eve of the elections. I expect that in the next two or three months, we will know exactly who will be Maia Sandu’s opponent,” said political expert Mihai Mogâldea.
“Regardless of the messages coming from some parties, from former president Igor Dodon, and others. I believe that in the end, there will be a consolidation of the entire pro-Russian or anti-European opposition. Around a single candidate who will not only have the support of a group of parties but also significant financial resources, investments in his electoral campaign, including probably attempts to bribe and corrupt voters. Wherever possible to expand the supporter base to the maximum,” added Mihai Mogâldea, as reported by Tvr Moldova.
At the same time, the expert wonders to what extent this unique candidate, who will be designated in the coming period, will have the necessary time to rise in polls to attract enough supporters to become a competitor with a chance of winning.
“Probably, this opposing candidate could have access to a voter base, potential supporters of about 30 percent, but that is not enough to win. We know that the consolidated pro-Russian electorate in the Republic of Moldova is around this 30 percent figure but does not exceed it. Surveys show us that it does not go beyond 30 percent, and this has been tested over several years. When asked about desiring a closer relationship with the Russian Federation, integration, or a Eurasian Economic Union, usually the responses from voters in this segment in recent years did not exceed 30-32%.
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With this electorate, if you go into elections, you don’t have much chance of winning, and then the electoral strategy with which this candidate will approach the electorate comes into discussion, which will probably be intended to create more confusion in the minds of voters,” Mogâldea added.
According to him, the strategy will likely involve a centrist discourse, sometimes even pro-European, from this candidate.
“We have already seen Igor Dodon changing the political program of the PSRM and relying on the idea that any integration in the East or West must be built on certain principles, practically saying that he would agree even with integration into the EU, only with the respect of certain principles. This tells us Igor Dodon compared to what he said 5-6 years ago when he didn’t even openly support integration into the EU. So, the discourse changes over time. Currently, for them, this pro-Russian party has a credibility problem, including among their voters. Whether we’re talking about Igor Dodon, Irina Vlah, or Ion Ceban, each of them has a problem, either they don’t reach the national electorate, are not known to voters across the country, or have serious credibility and integrity issues, as is the case with Igor Dodon, known even to his former supporters,” added Mihai Mogâldea.