The 9-in-1 elections are coming at the end of this year. While Tsai Ing-wen’s position is not up for grabs being these are local elections, her popularity, or lack their of, could potentially ooze through the party and help make or brake some of the elections around Taiwan. Recent polling gives us details on how popular Taiwan’s President currently is.
The Taiwanese Public Opinion Foundation (台灣民意基金會) has released its most recent polling on the Taiwanese voting population’s opinion regarding the popularity of President Tsai (see the tables at the end of the article). The polling was conducted from February 14th to 15th this year and was conducted via telephone. This was a national poll and contains 1079 valid samples from individuals 20 years of age and older. The margin of error for the poll was +/-2.98, with a 95 percent level of confidence.
It seems that Tsai has broken over 50 percent favorable for the first time since October of last year, achieving 50.3 percent favorable ratings overall. While her over all popularity is up, she did lose some of those that, just a month ago, more fervently supported her. Individuals that reported as strongly supportive dropped from 15.1 to 13.6 percent, though this is within the margin of error. However, those reporting general support grew nearly the same amount, going up to 36.7 percent from 34.6 the month prior. Those with no opinion also grew from 5.9 to 8.5.
In terms of negative views, Tsai reduced her negative results 3.6 points, down to 37.7 this month from 41.3 last month. Her detractors also became less scathing. Both categories of opposition dropped. Those in strong opposition dropped the most falling 3.3 points, down to 16.3 from 19.6 a month ago. The generally not supportive group also declined, though only .7, down to an even 21 percent.
All of these numbers seem quite positive for Tsai. Her support numbers are up and those opposed dropped in all categories. While this is not a huge shift from where she was a month ago, it is an improvement nonetheless. It may also show overall satisfaction with the DPP’s direction on major issues, and with more recent moves such as opening up to Fukushima food imports looking like they could possibly become favorable in the polls soon which could translate to wins for local candidates in November.