Mon, Oct 22, 2018 - Page 3 News List

2018 ELECTIONS: Ko leading by a wide margin: survey

HITTING A NERVE:The Taipei mayor’s popularity quickly fell when respondents were asked about the Taipei Dome, with 60.1 percent disapproving of Ko’s performance

By Lee I-chia  /  Staff reporter

Taipei Mayor Ko Wen-je, left, shakes hands with Chinese Nationalist Party (KMT) Taipei mayoral candidate Ting Shou-chung at the Taipei Hakka Yimin Festival in Taipei yesterday.

Photo: CNA

Taipei Mayor Ko Wen-je’s (柯文哲) support rating has surpassed those of Chinese Nationalist Party (KMT) Taipei mayoral candidate Ting Shou-chung (丁守中) and Democratic Progressive Party (DPP) mayoral candidate Pasuya Yao (姚文智) combined, a poll released yesterday by the Taiwanese Public Opinion Foundation showed.

The survey asked respondents who they would vote for if the elections were held tomorrow.

According to the poll, 42.1 percent of respondents said they would vote for Ko, 28.5 percent said they would vote for Ting and 11.6 percent said they would vote for Yao.

The poll found that 2.6 percent said they would vote for one of the two independent candidates, while 15.1 percent said they were undecided, unwilling to vote or refused to answer.

Foundation chairman You Ying-lung (游盈隆) said he was “shocked” that the results were similar to those of a poll conducted in February.

Ko’s support rating has dropped by 5.5 percent, Ting’s has increased by 3.3 percent and Yao’s has fallen by 4 percent since February, but Ko is still clearly in the lead, he said.

According to the poll, 55.4 percent of respondents who identified as KMT supporters said they would vote for Ting, while 35.2 percent said they would vote for Ko.

Of those who identified as DPP supporters, 50.1 percent said they would vote for Ko and 36.1 percent said they would vote for Yao, while 45.7 percent of median voters said they would vote for Ko, 14.3 percent for Ting and 6.6 percent for Yao.

The results show that KMT and DDP supporters are divided, and explains why Ko is leading the poll, You said.

The survey also found that Ko had an approval rating of 55.7 percent and a disapproval rating of 36.2 percent, which was also similar to the February poll. His approval rating fell by 1.1 percent and disapproval rating dropped by 3.2 percent since then.

However, when respondents were specifically asked about Ko’s handling of the Taipei Dome project, 60.1 percent disapproved, while only 27.5 percent approved.

When presented with a scenario in which Ko loses the mayoral race and runs for president in 2020, only 28.1 percent approved, the survey found.

When asked if they would approve of a scenario in which Ko wins the mayoral race and runs for president in 2020, 67.4 percent of respondents disapproved, while 21.9 percent approved.

Shih Hsin University Graduate Institute for Gender Studies professor Chen Yi-chien (陳宜倩) said there has not been substantial debate among the mayoral candidates on their core values and important issues, which makes the election uninteresting.

Chen expressed the hope that there would be real discussions on labor, gender and other issues before election day.

Ko campaign office spokesman Lin Hsiao-chi (林筱淇) said Ko’s diligence in performing his mayoral duties and caring for the public, as well as his practicality, has made an impression on Taipei residents, adding that political party affiliation is not the residents’ only consideration when voting.

Ting said the results are for reference only, adding that he would continue trying to win support.

The telephone survey was prepared by the foundation and conducted from Sunday to Tuesday last week by Focus Survey Research on eligible voters.

It collected 1,074 valid samples and has a confidence level of 95 percent and margin of error of 2.99 percentage points.

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