Social Democratic Party

Published 12th November, 2012

The Social Democratic Party or PSD can trace its roots back to 1992 but in its present format was formed in 2001. The original party was founded in 1992 by the then president Ion Iliescu as the Democratic National Salvation Front (FSND) which merged with the Romanian Socialist Democratic Party and the Republican Party to form the Social Democracy Party of Romania (PDSR). The PDSR in turn then merged with the Romanian Social Democratic Party (PSDR) to form the current Social Democratic Party in 2001.

The party describes itself as Centre-Left and believes in Social Democracy and Third Way.

The original FSND won the 1992 general election with 117 of the 341 seats in the Chamber of deputies. It formed a coalition government and ruled until 1996 when it lost the election and as the PDSR it won just 91 seats in the 343 seat parliament.

By 2000 the party had recovered and won 155 seats in a 345 seat parliament whilst Ion Iliescu won the presidential election with 66.8% of the vote. It formed a coalition government with the Romanian Social Democratic Party (PSDR) and the Romanian Humanist Party (PUR). It was at this point that the party took its present name.

In 2004 the PSD won the most seats, 113 of 332 but was forced into opposition. The party presidential candidate Adrian Năstase was not successful and he lost to Traian Băsescu of the Justice and Truth alliance.

In 2008 the Social Democratic Party won 114 seats in the 334 seat Chamber of Deputies, just one less than the Democratic Liberal Party (PDL). At first the two parties worked together in government but it didn’t last and in 2009 the PSD withdrew from the government.

In 2010 the PSD formed the Social Liberal Union political alliance with the Conservative Party (PC) and National Liberal Party (PNL). By February 2012 the PDL government was suffering from street protests against austerity measures and following the resignation of the prime minister in February 2012 and a second failed attempt in April, the Social Democratic Party returned to power in May 2012 at the head of the coalition government led by Victor Ponta.

The Social Democratic Party is a member of Socialist International and of the Party of European Socialists. In the European Parliament where it has 11 of 33 national seats it is a member of the Progressive Alliance of Socialists and Democrats.

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