Sat, Aug 16, 2014 - Page 3 News List

Surveys provide warning signs for DPP: think tank

By Shih Hsiu-chuan  /  Staff reporter

The Democratic Progressive Party (DPP) cannot afford to be “over-optimistic” about its prospects in the Nov. 29 elections, Taiwan Brain Trust executive director Liu Shih-chung (劉世忠) said yesterday.

At a press conference for the think tank’s latest public opinion poll — conducted every two months — Liu said the DPP should take heed of “warning signs.”

The percentage of respondents withholding their views about the election dropped by 13.4 points to 39.4 percent in the survey conducted from Thursday to Saturday last week, Liu said.

Asked which party they would vote for in the mayoral and commissioner races, 21.9 percent favored Chinese Nationalist Party (KMT) candidates, up 4.1 points from two months ago, while those who preferred DPP nominees was virtually flat at 29.5 percent, Liu said, adding that the number of those who chose other candidates rose by 9.2 points.

Recent moves show that the KMT has been trying to set the election agenda on cross-strait issues and the political confrontation between the camps, Liu said.

Given that 39.4 percent of voters are undecided and critical to determining who wins, the DPP must be wary of KMT strategies to consolidate pan-blue support as well as undermine the DPP’s image, Liu said.

The surveys showed that the ratio of respondents who found the DPP the least likable party “has been steadily rising,” climbing from 11.1 percent in January to 19.2 percent this month, while those who dislike the KMT decreased from 34.9 percent to 31.7 percent during the same period, Liu said.

The survey showed that 24.5 percent saw the KMT as their most favored party, against 17.3 percent in January. That compares with 24.5 percent for the DPP this month, against 26.8 percent in January.

“The DPP’s marginalization in the Sunflower movement, the KMT’s demonization of the DPP, its factional infighting and failure to offer concrete policy proposals” might be driving discontent, Liu said.

Asked about parties’ performance, 55.6 percent said they were dissatisfied with the DPP, up from 46.3 percent in January, while those who were satisfied with the party’s performance dropped from 36.6 percent in January to 27.3 percent, the survey showed.

Meanwhile, public dissatisfaction with the KMT’s performance decreased from 77.8 percent in January to 69.2 percent in August, while its satisfaction rating rose from 13.5 percent to 23.6 percent during the same period.

Ma’s approval rating was 21 percent, while Premier Jiang Yi-huah (江宜樺) garnered 23 percent and the Cabinet 20.2 percent, the survey showed.

The survey gathered 1,207 valid samples with a confidence level of 95 percent and a margin of error of plus or minus 2.8 percent, the think tank said.

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