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A Romanian news outlet published a recent poll on the Romanian public's sentiment towards restoring the monarchy.

Translated:

Over half of Romanians (56.4%) believe that if Romania had adopted the monarchy immediately after 1989, things would have been different in the years after the Revolution. On the other hand, a similar percentage (54.7%) would vote against the monarchy and for maintaining the republic in the event of a referendum, 13.7% more than 10 years ago, according to a poll conducted by INSCOP commissioned by News.ro.

Referendum on monarchy Asked how they would vote in an eventual referendum

If it were a question of Romania becoming a monarchy, 54.7% of Romanians say they would vote against the monarchy and for maintaining the republic (compared to 41% in July 2013). 35.4% say they would vote in favor of the monarchy (compared to 27.2% in July 2013), and 9.9% do not know or do not answer (compared to 31.8% in July 2013).

People over the age of 60, passive inactive, those with a lower income say they would vote against the monarchy at a higher rate than other categories of the population. They would vote in favor of the monarchy especially: young people under 30, residents of Bucharest and those with a higher income, according to socio-demographic data.

Rating of the Royal House

13.5% of those surveyed have a very good opinion of the Royal House of Romania (compared to 12.5% in July 2013), 35% good (28.5% in July 2013), 36.2% neither good nor bad (43.5% in July 2013), 4.8% bad (5% in July 2013), 4.4% very bad (1.4% in July 2013). The share of non-responses is 6.1% of the total sample (9.1% in July 2013).

Monarchy vs Republic after 1989

Asked if things would have been different in the 34 years since the events of December 1989, if Romania had adopted the monarchy immediately after 1989, 56.4% of survey participants say it would have been better, 22.1% that it would have been the same, and 11.2% that it would have been worse. 10.3% do not know or do not answer.

"Although the republic remains the preferred form of government currently by Romanians, over two-thirds of the survey participants considering that the republic has the advantage that the president is voted periodically and there is no risk of gaining too much power, the monarchy retains a surprisingly high and growing popularity compared to the situation ten years ago. A third of Romanians say they would vote in an eventual referendum in favor of the monarchy and almost 55% would vote in favor of the republic. Also, the popularity of the monarchy is higher among young people under 30 who would vote in greater proportions than other categories in favor of this type of regime. On the other hand, 34 years after the collapse of communism, Romanian society seems to regret the fact that at that time we did not return to the monarchical regime, 56.4% of the survey participants stating that the country's situation would have been better if Romania had adopted the monarchy immediately after 1989", remarks Remus Ştefureac, director of INSCOP Research.

Comparing the polls from 2013 and 2023, people are way more vocal about whether they would support the monarchy or not. Since more than half of the public is against the institution it wouldn't have any chance at actually coming back to power, but to me as a French that there is 30%+ support for it was surprising. Here no one would take arguments that Jean-Christophe should be head of state seriously.

What can be attributed to the unique high and sustained supported of the monarchy by the Romanian people? Why are younger, wealthier people more in favor of such measure than their older, poorer counterparts?

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    13.5% of those surveyed have a very good opinion of the Royal House of Romania ... 35% good That doesn't sound like very high support.
    – user103496
    Dec 19, 2023 at 4:13
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    That is a very long quote. Can it maybe be shortened a bit? Also, how does that compare to other countries in that region? Is support in Romania really higher than in many other countries? If not, it's just the normal thing. Dec 19, 2023 at 7:33
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    @NoDataDumpNoContribution There are only three countries in southeastern Europe where the changing borders have resulted in a country that could draw on a royal tradition: Romania, Bulgaria and Greece. In Bulgaria, Simeon Sakskoburggotski decided to enter the democratic contest and was elected Minister President 2001–2005. He was not re-elected, and his party lost most of its support. In the course of the 20th century, Greece had a whopping five referendums about the monarchy, and the last two (1973 – instigated by the military junta and 1975 – under democratic rule) were against it...
    – ccprog
    Dec 19, 2023 at 18:15
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    @NoDataDumpNoContribution I have to correct myself: Montenegro "maintains the tradtion of the monarchy" and Nicholas Petrović-Njegoš is an official non-political representant of Montenego. Serbia has restituted citicenship and private property ownership to the Karađorđević family. Alexander Karađorđević sees himself as the crown-pretender of Serbia. No idea what the public opinion is about those two.
    – ccprog
    Dec 19, 2023 at 19:17
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    Interestingly enough, support appears to have surged after the (former) king died. en.wikipedia.org/wiki/…. Also, one has to be careful in reading those polls. They don't seem to have the exact same Q. Support for a referendum might not be the same as support for monarchy. Some might want to see a referendum in order to have the idea more officially buried (given that it lacks majority support). Dec 21, 2023 at 0:20

1 Answer 1

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Note: This answer tries to shed some light on the possible reasons to explain this phenomenon and is mostly based on the personal experience of living for several decades in Romania.

Idealization of the Past

There is a significant idealization of the interwar period for various reasons such as the economic boom and having the largest frontiers:

Major cultural achievements and fundamental social debates seem to occupy the few decades separating World War One from World War Two, The short period of existence of Greater Romania, with its largest ever frontiers, and during its only economic boom to date.

These years are the last years of the Romanian Monarchy in Romania.

At the personal level, a factor that might have contributed to the younger population being supporters despite not having direct contact with the monarchy is family education. During the communist era and shortly after, many children were at least in part raised by their grandparents (before the '90s the week had 6 working days) and these grandparents had experienced as young individuals the last years of monarchy and the transformation into the dictatorship. Naturally, they perceived the interwar years as way better than the alternative.

Cultural and Historical Pride

It was during the first two Kings when Romania had the biggest leap in modernizing the country and expanding its territories (the Great Union of 1918). As a side note, King Carol I was declared one of the greatest Romanians in a TV show.

Disillusionment with the Present

After the fall of communism, many Romanians (unrealistically) hoped that the country would be similar to a Western one in a matter of years. While Romania's development (mostly due to EU and NATO membership) is undeniable, there is significant political and economic dissatisfaction, especially among the younger, wealthier people.

This dissatisfaction contributes to the idealization of a more stable, prosperous, or culturally rich past. And this period is the monarchic one.

Side note: I think this phenomenon is not unique to Romania and it also be identifiable in other countries.

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    In a neighboring country, Bulgaria, a former monarch, Simeon II., even was elected around 2001. Feb 18 at 20:23
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    @NoDataDumpNoContribution Simeon 2 was elected as a prime minister and swore to serve the Republic of Bulgaria, making it a whole lot harder for anyone to pretend for the throne. And after his term, Bulgarians are a whole lot less eager to restore the monarchy anyway.
    – fraxinus
    Feb 19 at 8:17

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