Former premier William Lai (賴清德) has attracted more grassroots support than President Tsai Ing-wen (蔡英文) as the two compete to seek the Democratic Progressive Party’s (DPP) nomination for next year’s presidential election, a Taiwan Public Opinion Foundation poll said yesterday.
Lai and Tsai last week separately registered for the party’s presidential primary. Until Lai’s announcement on Monday last week, which caught many party members off guard, only Tsai had announced her bid for the party’s nomination.
The survey showed that 59.8 percent of respondents supported Lai’s candidacy, while 28.9 percent did not.
Photo: Liu Hsin-de, Taipei Times
Asked which of the two they support, 55.1 percent chose Lai, 26 percent backed Tsai, while 18.9 percent said they did not know or have not yet decided, the poll showed.
Another 65.9 percent said that Tsai might not be re-elected.
The survey also showed that 52.8 percent did not support Taipei Mayor Ko Wen-je (柯文哲), an independent, joining the race, and 60 percent did not want Kaohsiung Mayor Han Kuo-yu (韓國瑜) of the Chinese Nationalist Party (KMT) running either.
Ko and Han have not said they plan to join the presidential race, but their supporters have been encouraging them to do so.
Asked to choose between Lai, Ko and Han, 36.5 percent favored Lai, while 29.9 percent supported Han and 26 percent Ko, the poll showed.
Lai should also be able to beat former New Taipei City mayor Eric Chu (朱立倫), who has declared his intention to vie for the KMT’s nomination, the survey showed.
While 48.1 percent are satisfied with Premier Su Tseng-chang’s (蘇貞昌) performance, only 32.4 percent found Tsai’s performance satisfactory, the poll showed.
Lai’s performance as premier appeared the best among the three premiers under Tsai’s administration so far, former DPP legislator Lin Cho-shui (林濁水) said, adding that the DPP might lose next year’s election if it does not pick a candidate voters like.
Meanwhile, the DPP’s approval rating surpassed the KMT’s after lagging behind for four months, which could be attributed to Lai’s election bid, foundation chairman You Ying-lung (游盈隆) said, adding that morevoters could embrace the ruling party again due to Lai’s role.
The poll was conducted on Monday and Tuesday last week and collected 1,073 valid samples.
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