President Chen Shui-bian (陳水扁) popularity has fallen to a new low of ten percent amid intensified infighting in his Democratic Progressive Party in the wake of its election setback, a survey said yesterday.
The survey by the TVBS cable news channel on Wednesday and Thursday also found that some 33 percent of 945 respondents approved of the performance of Vice President Annette Lu (呂秀蓮), despite her strong criticism of the president.
The poll was conducted after Lu changed her mind and agree to continue as the DPP's acting chairman after senior party politicians called for unity amid a rift between the top two leaders.
Lu on Monday suddenly offered to resign from the post, saying in a reference to Chen that "The house's master is near-sighted and what matters (to him) is power."
Chen hit back on Tuesday, with his office issuing an unusual statement rebutting Lu's allegations.
The DPP's Su Chen-chang, who immediately stepped down as party chief following its setback in local elections on December 3, enjoyed a popularity level of 62 percent, according to the survey.
Opposition leader and Taipei Mayor Ma Ying-jeou (馬英九) led the list of politicians with an 80 percent approval rate.
Of the 23 posts up for grabs in the election for city mayors and county magistrates, the DPP took only six - a loss of three seats - while Ma's Kuomintang gained six to take 14.
Chen enjoyed a 79 percent popularity rate one month after he was inaugurated in June 2000 to end the KMT's 51-year rule on the island. He was re-elected last year to a second and final term.
Chen's popularity dipped to 21 percent in a poll released by the United Daily News after the local elections.