Latest poll sees widening of ND lead; ruling SYRIZA ‘sinks’ in northern Greece

18 June 2018
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The latest opinion poll results released over the weekend – amid a particularly eventful previous week in terms of political developments – has main opposition New Democracy (ND) party widening its double-digit percentage point lead over ruling SYRIZA party.

According to a poll conducted by the Marc firm, up until Friday, center-right ND fields a 14.4 percentage point lead over leftist SYRIZA, improving its lead of 9.1 percentage points from last March. Another important result from the same opinion poll is that SYRIZA has fallen to 9.1 percent in northern Greece in the wake of a very prominent bilateral agreement regarding the fYRoM “name issue”.

The biggest province in northern Greece, and the entire country, is called Macedonia, with the agreement between Athens and Skopje now officially opening the way for a “Republic of North Macedonia” to Greece’s north. The new name, assuming the agreement is ratified in both countries, would replace the provisional “former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia” (used by Athens and international organizations, European institutions etc) and the constitutional “Republic of Macedonia”, used by the one-time Yugoslav constituent state and recognized by roughly 140 countries.

Another noteworthy finding is that a slim majority of respondents, in the specific poll, at least, now favor snap elections, 50.4 percent, up from 34 percent in January 2018.

The results, which were published in the Sunday weekly “Proto Thema”, show a new social democrat/center-left grouping mostly coalescing around the PASOK party at 6.5 percent (down 0.5 percent from March 2018); ultra-nationalist Golden Dawn is at 6.3 percent (-0.1 percent) and the Communist Party at 5.5 percent (-0.1 percent).

Moreover, the undetermined / undecided vote reaches a whopping 46.4 percent in the poll; the invalid/blank vote was at 6.5 percent.

Seven out of 10 respondents in the poll said the agreement regarding a fYRoM name solution was “bad”, while agreeing with the position that Athens should not accept the name “Macedonia” in any “name solution” for the neighboring state.

Without taking into account the undecided/undetermined vote, ruling SYRIZA falls to 14 percent of respondents’ preferences, its lowest point since May 2017, when comparing results by the same firm.

ND picks up 1.2 percentage points from the last result in March 2018, returning to 26.4 percent of respondents’ preferences.

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