PASOK’s declining popularity is threatening to consign the party that has dominated Greek politics for the past three decades to also-ran status at the next general elections according to a new opinion poll, which also indicated that the public’s faith in interim Prime Minister Lucas Papademos is on the wane.
The Public Issue poll for Sunday’s Kathimerini indicated that support for PASOK has dropped by 1.5 percent since December and the Socialists now have 14 percent of the total vote. Despite a slight decline, New Democracy remains the leading party with 30.5 percent, which is well short of what would be needed for an outright majority in Parliament. This would give the conservatives about 130 seats in the 300-seat Parliament.
PASOK would secure about 40 seats, compared to the 160 it won at the parliamentary elections in November 2009. The party’s dramatic decline means that it is on the verge of being overtaken by the parties of the left.
Democratic Left, the most moderate of the three leftist parties, saw its support rise to 13.5 percent. Its leader, Fotis Kouvelis, is the most popular party chief with an approval rating of 56 percent. The Communist Party (KKE) garnered 12.5 percent and the Coalition of the Radical Left (SYRIZA) 12 percent.
The right-wing Popular Orthodox Rally (LAOS) saw its support dip slightly to 5 percent in the latest survey, which also suggested that one in three voters would abstain.
The poll also indicated a 5 percent drop from December in Papademos’s approval rating. More significantly, it showed an increase in the percentage of Greeks who do not trust him to manage the country’s economic problems. The figure stands at 62 percent now, compared to 35 percent when he took over in November. Almost nine in 10 think Greece is heading in the wrong direction.