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Politicians' Ratings in NDI-Commissioned Poll
Civil Georgia, Tbilisi / 20 Dec.'13 / 22:07

President Giorgi Margvelashvili, Defense Minister Irakli Alasania, PM Irakli Garibashvili and parliament speaker Davit Usupashvili are among the active politicians with highest positive favorability ratings, according to NDI-commissioned poll fielded in the second half of November.

The poll, released on Friday, is part of a broader survey which was fielded by the Caucasus Resource Research Centers (CRRC) on November 13-27 and which also looks into public attitudes towards various policy and current issues. The survey was conducted through nationwide face-to-face interview with 3,915 respondents and has a margin of error plus, minus 2%.

The poll, which was fielded just several weeks after the October 27 presidential election which Georgian Dream’s Giorgi Margvelashvili won with 62.1% of votes, shows that 61% of respondents identify GD as the political force “closest” to them, followed by UNM with 9%. 14% chose answer “no party”, 5% refused to answer and 4% were undecided.

Alasania and Margvelashvili, who at the time of the polling was already elected as the president, had 72% favorability rating each with their unfavorability rating standing at 10% and 9%, respectively. Compared to previous similar survey in late August and early September, Margvelashvili’s net-positive score jumped from 35 to 63 points.

Alasania was not included in the previous such survey so it’s impossible to compare how, if at all, his favorability rating has changed since early September. But a survey of ministers’ job performance shows that his job approval rating increased by two percentage points to 51%, but the change actually falls within the margin of error.

Garibashvili, who was confirmed as PM on November 20, had 71% positive favorability rating against 10% negative. Like Alasania, Garibashvili too was not included in the previous such survey. But his positive job performance rating increased from 43% in early September to 54% in late November; the rating apparently reflects public attitude towards his tenure as the interior minister as polling was concluded only a week after Garibashvili assumed PM’s office.

65% of respondents hold a favorable opinion of parliament speaker Davit Usupashvili and his unfavorable rating was 15%, for a net-positive of 50 points up from 38 in early September. Usupashvili’s best net-positive score (53), since becoming parliament speaker last October, was in March, 2013.
 
The part of survey which examines favorability ratings includes a list of over forty figures, mainly politicians, but not only them, and represents respondents’ answers on a question whether they "like" or "dislike" specific figures.

Patriarch of the Georgian Orthodox Church, Ilia II, enjoys the highest positive favorability ratings (94%) among the persons on the list.

Former PM Bidzina Ivanishvili’s positive favorability rating was at 74%, a five percentage point increase from the previous survey three months earlier; 11% of respondents said they ‘dislike’ him. This recent poll was fielded one week before and one week after Ivanishvili’s departure from PM’s office.

MP Davit Bakradze, UNM parliamentary minority leader and a runner-up in the October presidential election with 21.7% of votes, remains the most popular opposition politicians with 48% favorability rating; 35% of respondents hold unfavorable opinion of him. Bakradze is actually the only opposition politician in the list who has net-positive favorability rating.

Alasania, Garibashvili and Usupashvili are the leaders of three out of six political parties, which make up the Georgian Dream coalition – Free Democrats, Georgian Dream-Democratic Georgia and Republican Party, respectively.

Other three parties in the coalition are Conservative Party, National Forum and Industrialists.

One of the leaders of National Forum, MP Gubaz Sanikidze, is the only among GD parties’ leaders who has net-negative favorability rating; his positive favorability rating stands at 28% and 41% of respondents hold negative opinion of him.

Conservative Party leader, MP Zviad Dzidziguri, is ‘liked’ by 45% of respondents and 29% hold opposite view. MP Gogi Topadze, leader of the Industrialists party, has 36% positive favorability rating and 32% negative.

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