15 May 2009

A new Poll puts Fine Gael in a commanding Lead, and Eamon Gilmore is the most popular Politician

A new TNS/MRBI poll, published in today's edition of the Irish Times, shows the support for Fine Gael at a new all-time high of 38%.
This gives the largest Irish opposition party a 17-point lead over the main government party Fianna Fáil, which dropped by one point to 21%, its worst rating since the party was founded in 1926 by Eamon de Valera.

The poll also shows a further drop in satisfaction with the government as a whole, and in particular with Taoiseach Brian Cowen, whose personal approval rate has sunk to 18%.

In comparison, Fine Gael leader Enda Kenny gets the thumbs-up from a third of the voters (33%), but the darling of the electorate is currently Labour Party leader Eamon Gilmore, with an approval rate of 51%.
I cannot think of any time in the past when the leader of the third-largest party in Ireland had such a high approval rate, in fact outclassing both the Taoiseach and the leader of the majority opposition.

Rather surprisingly the Labour Party has dropped four points in public support since the last poll and now stands on 20%.

With the (European and local) election campaigns now under way, the Green Party begins to feel the pinch and to pay the price for its participation in a government coalition led by Fianna Fáil.
In today's poll the Greens are down one point to 3%, which in a football league would clearly be inside the relegation zone.

Sinn Féin, the only parliamentary party that opposed the Lisbon Treaty, remains unchanged on 9% of public support.
The numerous independents and 'others' (which still includes the new Pan-European party Libertas) are also unchanged at 9%.

Predictably Enda Kenny and members of his front bench welcomed the poll with enthusiasm, while the reaction of the Labour Party was rather mixed.

And Fianna Fáil, to no-one's surprise, is still completely in denial.
Minister for Justice Dermot Ahern (left) tried to put the massive unpopularity of his party down to "the tough decisions we have to make in these difficult times", and to an extent he is certainly right with this assessment.
But what Fianna Fáil is unable - or unwilling - to recognise is the fact that it was no-one but themselves who created this situation. Somehow FF politicians still think that they can and will get away with it (again), without losing votes on a massive scale.

Perhaps on June 6th, which is rather appropriately the 65th anniversary of D-Day, things will be a lot clearer for Ireland and our government. Just as they were for the German government on June 6th, 1944.

The Emerald Islander


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