By Pedro Valenzuela Parcero
On March 26, the newspaper Reforma published its most recent public opinion analysis of President Enrique Peña Nieto’s approval rate. It is important to highlight three key aspects:
1. It seems that the approval rate has stalled at its lowest level and is not going to go lower, at least judging by the changes from previous figures. The approval is 39% for citizens and it drops to 17% for leaders.
2. The perception of Mexico’s problems varies between leaders and civil society. For the former, corruption is the main problem of the country, for the latter, crime is the main problem.
3. Finally, the way economic issues are handled is what is most disapproved of by both groups, while health, education, and poverty are handled the best, according to citizens; and health and employment according to leaders.
In contrast with the low approval rates for the President, on a new pollster published on March 30 regarding voting intentions for federal deputies, Reforma locates PRI with an effective rate of 32%, PAN 22%, PRD 14%, MORENA 8%, PVEM 7%, ES (Social Encounter) 4%, PANAL 4%, MC 3%, and PT, PH, and independent candidates with 2%.
These results represent a rise for PRI and PRD and a decrease for MORENA, PVEM, and PAN, in comparison to the prior poll. Similarly, there is a surprising 4% for both the new ES party and the PANAL.
These results potentially indicate that the PRI is surpassing the low approval of the President and that the opposition parties have failed to capture that discontent for the Executive branch, with the exception of some small and new parties. Furthermore, it may also mean that some social issues, such as Ayotzinapa or local-level scandals of corruption, have not made a significant change in the mind of the voter. All these numbers are before the formal start of campaigns next Sunday, April 5.