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Taiwan Thinktank poll puts dent in Ma image
Only 17.4 percent satisfied with president
Taiwan News, Staff Writer
2014-05-13 03:18 PM
TAIPEI (Taiwan News) – President Ma Ying-jeou’s satisfaction rate stood at 17.4 percent while the proportion of people who still regarded him as a clean politician was lower than that of those who did not, according to an opinion poll released by the Taiwan Thinktank Tuesday.

The results of the survey came a week before Ma marks his sixth anniversary in power and the half-way mark of his second and final term as president.

While 17.4 percent of respondents were satisfied with Ma, 72.8 percent were not. Ma, who built up a clean image while he was justice minister, was still regarded as clean by 38.1 percent of poll respondents, but 45.3 percent said they did not believe in his image.

A total of 64.8 percent said Ma had not performed his tasks as president in a satisfactory way, while 19.3 percent said he had.

The poll results showed that Ma was very unsuited to govern, Taiwan Thinktank Executive Director Lai I-chung said at the news conference presenting the data.

Rating the president’s honesty, 28.5 percent said they thought Ma was honest but 56 percent disagreed. A total of 68.8 percent said the president did not understand the people’s needs, while only 17.4 percent thought he did. He was described as untrustworthy by 60.8 percent, with 23 percent saying he could be trusted.

The Taiwan Thinktank said that looking at the survey as a whole, Ma would receive three out of ten marks, or not enough to pass. No matter whether the issue was clean politics, honesty or trustworthiness, the president clearly did not pass the grade in any of those domains, the thinktank said.

The survey was conducted by phone on April 26-28, with 1,230 valid responses for a margin of error of 2.8 percent, the group said.

Shortly after winning re-election with more than 50 percent of the vote in January 2012, Ma’s popularity ratings went into a steep decline, bottoming at around 9 percent and staying around 13 percent for most of the past two years. During the past wave of protests against his trade-in-services pact with China and against the fourth nuclear plant, he was regularly referred to as the “9-percent president.”

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