Ruling conservatives ahead of leftist opposition, poll shows

Ruling New Democracy (ND) is one percentage point ahead of leftist opposition SYRIZA, according to the latest Public Issue opinion poll for Skai and Kathimerini.

The survey conducted earlier this month puts the conservatives on 28.5 percent and SYRIZA on 27.5 percent.

Golden Dawn is on 11 percent, followed by PASOK on 8 percent, and Independent Greeks and the Communist Party (KKE) on 7 percent apiece.

Democratic Left (DIMAR), which recently left the country’s coalition government, is on 3 percent – the minimum requirement for entering the 300-member Parliament.

Only 23 percent of Greeks have a positive view of the recent government reshuffle, the poll found. Forty seven percent of ND supporters saw the shake-up in a positive light. The figure for PASOK voters was even lower at 41 percent.

DIMAR chief Fotis Kouvelis also lost support in the wake of his party’s pull-out. His approval ratings are 8 percent down at 34 percent. Prime Minister Antonis Samaras of ND was found to be the most popular party leader with approval ratings of 39 percent, a 3 percent drop on June. Alexis Tsipras of SYRIZA, which launched its first congress Wednesday with the aim of becoming a single party rather than a collection of factions, is at 36 percent.

Some 65 percent of respondents said they are skeptical of an early election, yet 60 percent think it is unlikely the ND/PASOK government will serve its full term.

According to the survey, most Greeks do not believe that the debt-hit nation is set for recovery. Slightly more than 60 percent said they expect their personal finances to worsen. A total 75 percent said they expect unemployment, which rose to 27.4 percent in the first quarter of 2013, to rise further.

People’s view of the euro is almost unchanged, the poll found, with 55 percent having a positive opinion. It was the same level as previous months but well below February’s 70 percent.

Inspectors from the European Union, European Central Bank and International Monetary Fund troika completed their latest review of Greece’s bailout this week, allowing euro area finance ministers to approve 6.8 billion euros in aid.

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