Sat, Apr 05, 2014 - Page 3 News List

TRADE PACT SIEGE: DPP lawmaker says poll on Sunflower disapproval flawed

By Tseng Wei-chen, Chen Mei-ying and Jake Chung  /  Staff reporter, with staff writer

Democratic Progressive Party (DPP) Legislator Kuan Bi-ling (管碧玲) yesterday accused the National Development Council of slanting a recent poll to support “predetermined results” by the government on the student-led Sunflower movement.

Kuan was referring to the poll, released on Thursday, that showed close to 50 percent of respondents are dissatisfied with the student movement.

The survey was biased in its wording and riddled with leading questions, Kuan said after analyzing the questions used.

She said the questionnaire starts by asking respondents if they knew about the Legislative Yuan being occupied by students, followed by whether they condoned the action.

Of those interviewed, 46.1 percent answered “yes,” while 37.2 percent answered “no.”

Disapproval soared to 69.3 percent after the question described the March 23 attempt to occupy the Executive Yuan as “destruction of public property, theft and illegal occupation,” Kuan said.

She attributed the 62.7 percent of respondents approving police removal of the students and the 43.7 percent supporting increasing the police’s “legal enforcement” to the wording of the question.

Only 31.7 percent of interviewees felt the police’s removal was “bloody suppression.”

The questionnaire described the pact as “China offering to open 80 items for Taiwanese investment,” while Taiwan was only allowing the opening of 64 items and would ban Chinese workers from coming to Taiwan. Kuan said this contributed to a marginal lead for approving the pact at 40.9 percent, over 39.6 percent in opposition.

The questions avoided mentioning the possibility of changing the pact’s content during review, and thus, said Kuan, lowered support to 26 percent for the students demand of a bill to first monitor cross-strait negotiations before reviewing the pact.

Only 27.8 percent supported sending the pact back to the Executive Yuan for review.

The students’ request for a civic constitutional assembly was completely ignored, but Jiang’s proposal of a “economic national forum” was included, creating an overwhelming 62.5 percent in support of the concept, she added.

Of those polled, 57.6 percent said students should leave the legislative chambers before their demands were met.

Meanwhile, netizens who also received the council’s poll said the questions were “rough” and “full of traps.”

They echoed Kuan’s comments that the wording of the questions painted the student protest in a bad light, adding that the government was attempting to put a spin on events to help President Ma Ying-jeou’s (馬英九) administration.

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