Christian Democratic National Peasants' Party

The Christian Democratic National Peasants' Party (Romanian: Partidul Național Țărănesc Creștin Democrat, officially abbreviated PNȚCD) is a Christian democratic[2] and agrarian[1] political party in Romania. It claims to be the rightful successor of the interwar National Peasants' Party (PNȚ), created from the merger of the Romanian National Party (PNR) from the then Austro-Hungarian-ruled Transylvania and the Peasants' Party (PȚ) from the Romanian Old Kingdom.

Christian Democratic National Peasants' Party
Partidul Național Țărănesc Creștin Democrat
LeaderAurelian Pavelescu
FoundedDecember 1989
Preceded byNational Peasants' Party
HeadquartersBd. Carol I, nr. 24,
sector 2, Bucharest
Christian democracy[2]
National conservatism[3]

Romanian nationalism[7]
Political positionCentre-right to right-wing
European affiliationECPM (2020–present)
EPP (1987–2017)
International affiliationCentrist Democrat International (CDI)
European Parliament groupECR group (2020–present)
ColoursGreen and blue
0 / 136
Chamber of Deputies
0 / 330
European Parliament (Romanian seats)
1 / 33
1 / 3,176
County Councilors
0 / 1,340
Local Councilors
42 / 39,900

PNȚCD was the largest and most important political party of the Romanian Democratic Convention (Romanian: Convenția Democrată Română, CDR) during the 1990s and was led by Corneliu Coposu and Ion Diaconescu, two former political prisoners during communism, but as the 2000s began it gradually feel out of grace amongst centre-right Romanian voters and slowly became an inactive microparty. The party was subsequently excluded from the European People's Party (EPP) in June 2017.[8] Eventually, it joined the European Christian Political Movement (ECPM) in February 2020.[9]

Given a tremendous disdain and resentment towards Pavelescu's leadership (the incumbent party president since 2011 onwards), another Christian peasant group known as the National Peasant Alliance (Romanian: Alianța Național Țărăniștă - Țărăniștii, ANȚ) seceded from the main PNȚCD in 2019 (which, according to them and their electoral basin, greatly drifted from its original ideology) and centered around leader Radu Ghidău (one of the youngest PNȚCD MPs during the legislature of the late 1990s, more specifically the one spanning over 1996–2000) for the 2020 Romanian local elections.[10][11][12]

History edit

1989–1992 edit

From left to right: Ion Diaconescu, Corneliu Coposu, and Ion Rațiu at a 1990 manifestation held in Bucharest

The Christian Democratic National Peasants' Party was (re)-founded by Corneliu Coposu, Ioan Alexandru, and Ion Rațiu in December 1989, being thus the first officially registered political party after the fall of communism. The party competed in the 1990 elections, where it ranked 4th with 2.5% (or 348,637 votes) and endorsed Ion Rațiu for president. The PNȚCD presidential candidate ranked 3rd, with 4.3% (or 617,007 votes).

Given the political dominance of the National Salvation Front (FSN) that was exerted prior and after the first free elections in post-1989 Romania, the PNȚCD decided to form a consistent alliance of centre-right parties aiming mainly to oppose it.

As a result, in 1991, most notably alongside the National Liberal Party (PNL; but also with other noteworthy civic organisations, foundations, and minor additional right-leaning political parties), the PNȚCD formed the Romanian Democratic Convention (CDR).

Eventually, the PNȚCD would affirm itself as the most dominant internal political force for much of the convention's existence. For the period 1990–1992, PNȚCD was one of the main opposition parties.

1992–1996 edit

At the 1992 elections, the party ran on a common CDR list (along with other allied parties within the convention) and endorsed the candidacy of Emil Constantinescu as President of Romania. Consequently, the CDR ranked 2nd, having scored 20.16% (or 2,210,722 votes), while Emil Constantinescu managed to qualify in the second round of the presidential election where he finished second with 38.57% (or 4,641,207 votes). For the period 1992–1996, the party was the main opposition force in the Parliament of Romania.

1996–2000 edit

At the 1996 elections, CDR managed to rank 1st, with 30.70% (or 3,772,084 votes), and once again endorsed Emil Constantinescu, who also managed to win the presidency with 54.41% (or 7,057,906 votes). For the period 1996–2000, PNȚCD was the most important governing party within the CDR, being also part of a grand coalition which included the Democratic Party (PD) and the Democratic Alliance of Hungarians in Romania (UDMR/RMDSZ).

At the 2000 elections, PNȚCD ran on a common CDR 2000 list and scored 5.30% (or 575,706 votes), being unable to pass the electoral threshold required for an alliance. This weak electoral result was primarily owed to the fragmentation of the alliance and the scission of the Romanian right into several other parties as well as to the tumultuous previous governing term. For the period 2000–2004, PNȚCD was in extra-parliamentary opposition.

2004–2008 edit

PNȚCD headquarters in September 2008

At the 2004 elections, PNȚCD ran independently, having obtained 1.9% (or 196,027 votes), failing this time as well to surpass the needed electoral threshold. The party endorsed the presidential candidacy of Gheorghe Ciuhandu, former mayor of Timișoara. Ciuhandu eventually ranked 5th in the first round, with 1.9% (or 198,394 votes).

In March 2005, PNȚCD voted to change its name to the Christian Democratic People's Party (Romanian: Partidul Popular Creștin-Democrat, PPCD) after the unification with the Union for Romanian Reconstruction. Eventually, it returned to its original name (PNȚCD). The party did not compete in the 2008 legislative elections.

Afterwards, the party was split between a wing sustained by Marian Petre Miluț endorsing Aurelian Pavelescu as president (who decided on an alliance with the then governing Democratic Liberal Party, PDL) and one endorsing former Prime Minister and Bucharest mayor Victor Ciorbea as president (who, at that time, favoured an alliance with the National Liberal Party).[13]

2011–present edit

Party headquarters in Bucharest in December 2014

Victor Ciorbea was elected on 18 June 2011 president of the party. In September 2011, the Bucharest Courthouse (responsible for the parties registry) recognised Victor Ciorbea as party president.[14] Nonetheless, the split continued until Ciorbea left the party (until October 2012 namely) in order to become a senator on PNL's lists. Pavelescu was subsequently recognised as president and the fractions were dissolved.

For the 2012 legislative elections, PNȚCD ran on a common Right Romania Alliance (ARD), along with the Democratic Liberal Party (PDL), and the Civic Force (FC). The party won one senator seat and one deputy seat. On 23 April 2013, Pavelescu was elected president of the party.

At the 2014 European Parliament election, the party gained only 0.89% of the cast votes,[15] with candidates like former EP member Sebastian Bodu and the current party president, Aurelian Pavelescu, opening the list.

Following the 2019 European Parliament election and thanks to an agreement between the party and the Social Democratic Party (PSD), the party has 1 MEP, more specifically Cristian Terheș.[16]

For the 2019 Romanian presidential election, the party did not compete but endorsed PSD candidate Viorica Dăncilă. Furthermore, the party did not compete for the 2020 Romanian legislative election but it did compete for the 2020 Romanian local elections, where it won 1 mayor and 42 local councillors.

Motto edit

Its motto as of 2006 was Fiecare contează (Each one counts). At the 2014 EU elections, PNȚCD's motto was Renaștem pentru România ta! (Reborn for your Romania!).

Ideology edit

The PNȚCD is an agrarian, Christian democratic, and Christian humanist political party that stands for "social justice, Christian morality and enlightened patriotism." The party is anti-communist and advocates for de-Sovietization within Romania. It endorses the Universal Declaration of Human Rights in conjunction with the Romanian constitution and seeks to protect the cultural and traditional rights of all Romanian people. It also advocates for equal opportunities for all Romanians, uphold rule of law, defends the right to private property ownership, and calls for economic reform to stimulate the Romanian economy.[17]

Internationally, the party is a member of Centrist Democrat International (CDI) along with other Christian democratic and conservative movements and was affiliated with the European People's Party (EPP) in the European Parliament before joining the European Conservatives and Reformists (ECR) group.

Electoral history edit

Legislative elections edit

Election Chamber Senate Position Aftermath
Votes % Seats Votes % Seats
1990 351,357 2.56
12 / 395
348,637 2.50
1 / 119
 4th  Opposition to FSN government (1990–1991)
Opposition to FSN-PNL-MER-PDAR government (1991–1992)
1992 2,117,144 19.46
41 / 341
2,210,722 20.16
21 / 143
(as CDR)1
Opposition to PDSR-PSM-PUNR-PRM government (1992–1996)
1996 3,692,321 30.17
81 / 343
3,772,084 30.70
25 / 143
(within CDR)2
CDR-USD-UDMR government (1996–2000)
2000 546,135 5.04
0 / 345
575,706 5.29
0 / 140
(as CDR 2000)3
Extra-parliamentary opposition to PDSR minority government (2000–2004)
2004 188,268 1.85
0 / 332
196,027 1.90
0 / 137
 6th  Extra-parliamentary endorsement for DA-PUR-UDMR government (2004–2007)
Extra-parliamentary endorsement for PNL-UDMR minority government (2007–2008)
2008 did not compete4
0 / 334
did not compete4
1 / 137
(on PNL's lists)
Opposition to PDL-PSD government (2008–2009)
Opposition to PDL-UNPR-UDMR government (2009–2012)
Opposition to USL government (2012)
2012 1,223,189 16.51
1 / 412
1,239,318 16.71
1 / 176
(as ARD)5
Opposition to USL government (2012–2014)
Opposition to PSD-UNPR-UDMR-PC government (2014)
Opposition to PSD-UNPR-ALDE government (2014–2015)
Endorsing the technocratic Cioloș Cabinet (2015–2017)
2016 did not compete Extra-parliamentary endorsement for PSD-ALDE government (2017–2019)
Extra-parliamentary endorsement for PSD minority government (2019)
Extra-parliamentary opposition to PNL minority government (2019–2020)
2020 did not compete Extra-parliamentary opposition to PNL-USR PLUS-UDMR government (2020–2021)
Extra-parliamentary opposition to PNL-UDMR minority government (2021)
Extra-parliamentary opposition to CNR government (2021–present)
2024 TBA TBA


1 CDR members in 1992: PNȚCD, PAC (7 senators and 13 deputies), PNL-AT (1 senator and 11 deputies), PSDR (1 senator and 10 deputies), PNL-CD (4 senators and 3 deputies), and PER (no senators and 4 deputies).
2 CDR members in 1996: PNȚCD, PNL (22 senators and 28 deputies), PNL-CD (1 senator and 4 deputies), PAR (3 senators and 3 deputies), PER (1 senator and 5 deputies), and Ecologist Federation of Romania (FER - 1 senator and 1 deputy).
3 CDR 2000 members: PNȚCD, UFD, Ecologist Federation of Romania (FER), National Christian Democratic Alliance (ANCD), and The Moldavians' Party (PM).
4 PNȚCD competed on PNL lists.
5 Right Romania Alliance (ARD) members: PDL (22 senators and 52 deputies), FC (1 senators and 3 deputies), and PNȚCD.

Presidential elections edit

Election Candidate First round Second round
Votes Percentage Position Votes Percentage Position
1990 Ion Rațiu 617,007
1992 Emil Constantinescu1 3,717,006
 2nd  4,641,207
1996 Emil Constantinescu1 3,569,941
 2nd  7,057,906
2000 Mugur Isărescu2 1,069,463
2004 Gheorghe Ciuhandu 198,394
2009 did not compete3
2014 Elena Udrea4 493,376
2019 did not compete5
2024 TBA


1 Emil Constantinescu was the common centre-right candidate who was endorsed by the PNȚCD in both 1992 and 1996 as part of the larger Romanian Democratic Convention (CDR).
2 Mugur Isărescu was endorsed by the PNȚCD at the 2000 elections as part of the Romanian Democratic Convention 2000 (CDR 2000) alliance.
3 Electoral protocol endorsing Traian Băsescu, the candidate of the Democratic Liberal Party (PDL), due to a decision enforced by the then official fraction of the PNȚCD led by Marian Petre Miluț.
4 Elena Udrea was endorsed by the People's Movement Party (PMP)-PNȚCD alliance at the 2014 Romanian presidential election.
5 Electoral protocol endorsing Viorica Dăncilă, the candidate of the Social Democratic Party (PSD).

European elections edit

Election Votes Percentage MEPs Position EU Party EP Group
2007 71,001 1.38%
0 / 35
 11th  EPP EPP Group
2009 70,428 1.45%
0 / 33
 7th  EPP EPP Group
2014 49,978 0.89%
0 / 32
 12th  EPP EPP Group
2019 did not compete1
2024 TBA


1 Electoral protocol endorsing the Social Democratic Party (PSD).

Presidents of the party edit

  Also served as Prime Minister
  Also served as Chamber President
Born - Died
Portrait Term start Term end Duration
1 Corneliu Coposu
  1990 1995 c. 5 years
2 Ion Diaconescu
  1995 2001 c. 6 years
Constantin Dudu Ionescu
(acting/ad interim)
  2001 2001 less than 1 year
3 Andrei Marga
2002 2002 less than 1 year
4 Victor Ciorbea
  2002 2004 c. 2 years
5 Gheorghe Ciuhandu
  2004 2007 c. 3 years
6 Marian Petre Miluț
2007 2011 c. 4 years
7 Aurelian Pavelescu
2011 Incumbent c. 11 years

Notable members edit

References edit

  1. ^ a b Daniele Caramani (2013). The Europeanization of Politics. Cambridge University Press. p. 310. ISBN 978-1-107-11867-6.
  2. ^ a b Bakke, Elisabeth (18 February 2010). "Central and East European party systems since 1989". In Ramet, Sabrina P. (ed.). Central and Southeast European Politics since 1989. Cambridge University Press. p. 79. ISBN 978-1-139-48750-4.
  3. ^ "Romania". Retrieved 24 April 2023.
  4. ^ Canada: Immigration and Refugee Board of Canada, Romania: Information on the current situation of the Christian Democratic National Peasants' Party (Partidal National Taranese-Crestin si Democrat [PNTCD]) in Romania, 1 January 1994, ROM16270.E, available at: [accessed 10 May 2021]
  5. ^ "PNȚCD și partidul lui Liviu Dragnea vor să se alieze pentru a crea un pol politic suveranist. Liviu Dragnea a primit "Medalia Omagială Iuliu Maniu" din partea conducerii PNȚCD". 15 May 2022.
  6. ^ "PNȚ și europenismul:Maniu și Gafencu". 23 May 2022.
  7. ^ "Nationalistii's au unit platforma". Archived from the original on 6 November 2022. Retrieved 6 November 2022.
  8. ^ "Primul partid românesc din PPE a fost EXCLUS! " A fost o EXECUŢIE în stil BOLŞEVIC"". 9 June 2017.
  9. ^ "PNTCD Romania becomes the newest member of ECPM". ECPM. 3 March 2020. Retrieved 12 May 2020.
  10. ^ "S-a creat Alianța Național Țărănistă". Flux 24 (in Romanian). 11 November 2019. Retrieved 5 June 2021.
  11. ^ "Alianța Național Țărănistă, noul partid lansat de vechii țărăniști". Servus Cluj (in Romanian). 7 February 2020. Retrieved 5 June 2021.
  12. ^ "Alianța Național Țărănistă va conta în alegerile locale din Constanța". Constanța 100% (in Romanian). 12 December 2019. Retrieved 5 June 2021.
  13. ^ Newsin, Radu Sârbu a fost reales președintele aripii anti-Miluț a PNȚCD. September 26, 2009. Accessed on September 27, 2009
  14. ^ "Victor Ciorbea a fost recunoscut Preşedinte al PNŢCD de către instanţă | PNŢCD". Archived from the original on 4 June 2012. Retrieved 8 September 2012.
  15. ^ "Archived copy" (PDF). Archived from the original (PDF) on 8 August 2014. Retrieved 27 May 2014.{{cite web}}: CS1 maint: archived copy as title (link)
  16. ^ "PSD a pierdut un europarlamentar. Cristian Terheș a trecut la grupul extremiștilor din Parlamentul European". (in Romanian). Retrieved 12 May 2020.
  17. ^ "Statutul Partidului Naţional Ţărănesc Creştin Democrat". Retrieved 16 June 2022.

Further reading edit

  • Lavinia Stan, “From Riches to Rags: The Romanian National Christian Democrat Peasant Party,” East European Quarterly, vol. 39, no. 2 (Summer 2005), pp. 179–227.

External links edit