Exit polls: Romania’s Social Democrats in strong lead

BUCHAREST, Romania (AP) — Two exit polls are giving Romania’s left-leaning Social Democrats a huge lead in a parliamentary election, a year after a major anti-corruption drive forced the last Socialist prime minister from power.

According to polling institute CURS-AVANGARDE and the Romanian Institute for Evaluation and Strategy, the Social Democratic Party scored about 45 percent while the center-right Liberals came second with about 21 percent of the vote.

The chairman of the Social Democrats, Liviu Dragnea, greeted it cautiously, saying he was “quite satisfied” and “overwhelmed” by what the exit polls predicted, adding “I hope we won’t have conflicts in the future.”

According to the polls, the Save Romania Union, a new party, which ran on an anti-corruption ticket, came third

Early results are expected early Monday.