Democratic Progressive Party (DPP) Chairperson Tsai Ing-wen (蔡英文) has taken a small lead over President Ma Ying-jeou (馬英九) in the presidential election campaign, a poll released by Taiwan Thinktank yesterday showed.
According to the poll, Tsai had 35.9 percent support against Ma’s 35.4 percent, while support for People First Party Chairman James Soong (宋楚瑜) was at 10.8 percent, the poll showed.
Compared with a previous poll conducted by the group earlier this month, support for both Ma and Tsai dropped about 3 percent.
Former DPP legislator Julian Kuo (郭正亮) said the result showed that recent incidents and disputes, from the price of persimmons to the first presidential debate last Saturday to controversy surrounding DPP vice presidential candidate Su Jia-chuan’s (蘇嘉全) wife, Hung Heng-chu (洪恆珠), for attending at a party 10 years ago that featured a male strip show, did not benefit any candidate.
Instead, the incidents added uncertainty to the election, Kuo said, as the percentage of undecided voters increased from 10 to 17.9 percent.
On growing youth unemployment, 76.9 percent of respondents said that it was a serious issue that needed to be addressed promptly, while 65.8 percent said forced unpaid leave among private businesses was also a serious matter.
“The poll showed that the unemployment rate among young people and unpaid leave are serious issues for voters regardless of party preferences, and presidential candidates should focus more on addressing the issues,” Hsu Yung-ming (徐永明), a political scientist at Soochow University, said at a press conference held to release the poll results.
Liu Chin-hsin (劉進興), a retired professor at National Taiwan University of Science and Technology, said income and employment are two key economic elements, and the presidential candidates should address those issues because they concern the public the most.