Vlad Iaviță and I published a short analysis (paywall) for the Washington Post’s Monkey Cage on the snap legislative elections from the Republic of Moldova.
“Moldova held snap legislative elections July 11. After a months-long wrangle between Maia Sandu, the pro-Western president elected in November, and the pro-Russian majority in the legislature, new elections were called when the Parliament failed to name a new prime minister.
Sandu’s Party of Action and Solidarity (PAS) won this election in a landslide, with 52.8 percent of the vote. The second-place party, the pro-Russian Socialists, took only 27 percent. During the campaign, parties focused on two issues: extensive domestic corruption and whether Moldova should more closely align with Russia or the West.
For voters, corruption ultimately proved the more salient political issue, producing a substantial shift in electoral preferences. The anti-corruption campaign has now supplanted the geopolitical concerns pressed by pro-Russian parties. As a result, Sandu’s party claimed the largest vote gain in the history of the country. The large PAS majority will help safeguard Sandu’s reformist agenda, but much still depends on gaining international support and overcoming domestic institutional barriers.”