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But Romanians have become disenchanted with the president, particularly with the economy in a downturn.
Critics say he is too outspoken, makes statements that should be the government's responsibility and has grown increasingly argumentative which is inappropriate for his office.
In recent months, he has publicly expressed dislike for journalists, former King Michael and the highly respected public health official Raed Arafat, whose resignation prompted the protests which started on Thursday.
Protesters yelled "The Mafioso government stole everything we had!" and "Get out you miserable dog!" — a popular expression of contempt used to refer to Basescu. Protesters roamed through the centre of the capital, and Mayor Sorin Oprescu called on them to refrain from acts of violence. Antena 3 TV reported that shops in the vicinity of the protest were vandalized.
"We are here to protest, we cannot face it any more, we have no money to survive, our pensions are so small, the expenses are more than we can afford. It's no way to live," said a protester who would only identify himself as Sorin.
Boc said the main priorities for 2012 include maintaining jobs and investments and increased absorption of EU funds, which are essential for “maintaining the 2.1% economic growth forecast for 2012”.