Poll shows public outlook grim

The overwhelming majority of Greeks are disappointed with the country’s political parties and six in 10 believe that neither ruling Socialist PASOK nor main conservative opposition New Democracy is capable of solving major social and economic problems, a new opinion poll has revealed. According to the survey, carried out by polling firm Public Issue on behalf of Skai and Kathimerini, 80 percent of citizens are unhappy with the performance of the PASOK administration and even more (88 percent) are unimpressed with ND. Only 27 percent of those polled said they believed in the capabilities of a PASOK government, while an even smaller portion, 7 percent, said they had faith in ND. Six out of 10 respondents said they believed that neither PASOK nor ND was capable of tackling the country’s major problems. But only 21 percent said they believed it would be a good idea to hold elections now, with 72 percent saying they thought going to the polls would not change anything. In the event that general elections were to be held now, 44 percent of respondents said they would vote for PASOK and 27 percent ND, with 10.5 percent supporting the Communist Party (KKE), 5.5 percent voting for the far-right Popular Orthodox Rally (LAOS) and 4 percent backing the Coalition of the Radical Left (SYRIZA). As regards suitability for leadership, Prime Minister George Papandreou garnered 41 percent of the respondents’ votes, down from 49 percent in April, while ND leader Antonis Samaras amassed 18 percent, a slight improvement from 17 percent in April. The same poll indicated that the broader Greek public is pessimistic about the immediate future though the outlook was less negative than in June. A total of 66 percent of respondents said they believed developments in Greece were headed generally in the wrong direction, down from 72 percent in June. As regards the outlook for the beleaguered economy, 55 percent said they thought things would get worse, down from 69 percent in June. Asked how their own personal fortunes fared, only 8 percent said they saw prospects for improvement.

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