KMT needs to talk to DPP about crisis: Taiwan poll

President Ma's popularity at 16 %: TISR

TAIPEI (Taiwan News) – More than two thirds of respondents want the ruling Kuomintang to take the initiative and sit together with the opposition to find a way out of the current economic crisis, an opinion poll revealed Tuesday.
The latest edition of the regular Taiwan Mood Barometer Survey by Taiwan Indicators Survey Research showed that 68.1 percent of the public said a responsible attitude would for the KMT to find solutions together with the opposition parties, while 19.3 percent felt the party should solve problems on its own because it held an absolute majority at the Legislature as well as the presidency. Of KMT members, 64.2 percent also agreed with the statement that their party should reach out to the opposition.
The results followed a call by former Democratic Progressive Party Chairwoman Tsai Ing-wen for a National Affairs Conference to solve the nation’s financial crisis, in particular the eventual bankruptcy facing its pension and social insurance systems. President Ma Ying-jeou rejected Tsai’s idea, proposing a smaller-scale meeting with opposition leaders instead.
The issue was named ‘a grave national crisis’ by 74.9 percent of poll respondents, while 15.2 percent disagreed. The younger the age of the respondents and the higher their education level, the more they were worried about the financial crisis, the survey showed.
More than 40 percent of poll respondents said a dialogue between president and opposition leader would reinforce their confidence in Ma’s ability to run the country and solve problems, TISR said.
The president’s overall popularity was still low though, with the survey putting public satisfaction in Ma at 16.7 percent and the level of dissatisfaction at 72.6 percent. The president enjoyed the trust of 25 percent of respondents, with 60.4 percent expressing distrust.
Ma’s unpopularity was echoed by the figures for Premier Sean Chen, who received a popularity rating of 16.2 percent with 62 percent dissatisfied.
Both the positive and the negative ratings had declined slightly compared to the previous mood barometer survey conducted in early November, TISR said. The results showed that the majority of the public was not convinced that recent reforms announced by the Ma Administration would bear any fruit, according to the survey organizers.
Judging the country’s overall economic situation, 88.8 percent said Taiwan was in poor state, while only 6.2 percent felt good about the economy. A total of 48 percent of households said they could not make ends meet, while 46 percent said they had enough money to cover their expenses. The positive figures had shown a slight rise and the negative ones a limited decline compared to the previous mood survey, according to TISR.
The poll was conducted from November 23 thru 25, with 1,006 residents over 20 years of age interviewed by phone, the research body said. The margin of error stood at 3.1 percent, TISR said.