Colombia’s presidential candidates fail to convince the Colombian public as their talking points seem out of line with the expressed needs of the public, a poll indicates.
According to the latest Opinometro of pollster Datexco, 30% of Colombia’s voters have yet to make up their mind on who to choose for in the upcoming elections.
This could be due to the fact that most presidential candidates’ talking points do not coincide with what Colombians say they want their next president to tackle.
The public agenda
The poll showed that the three issues that most concern Colombians are healthcare (49.9%), unemployment (41.5%) and education (31.7%).
What Colombians say concerns them
- Healthcare (49.9%)
- Unemployment (41.5%)
- Education (31.7%)
- National security (20.1%)
- The economy (19%)
None of these issues have been mentioned by the leading presidential candidates, with the exception of socialist candidate Gustavo Petro, the leader in the presidential race.
The number two in the race, former Antioquia governor Sergio Fajardo, recently revealed his priorities, none of which correspond to the aforementioned public concerns.
Also the proposals of Clara Lopez, the social democrat running third, do not coincide with what voters said they want the president taking office on August 7 next year to tackle.
Colombia’s leading presidential candidates
- Gustavo Petro (11.2%)
- Sergio Fajardo (9.6%)
- Clara Lopez (8.3%)
- German Vargas (6.7%)
- Juan Manuel Galan (5.6%)
Politicians fail to convince
Another obstacle the candidates face is their lack of popularity or fame.
Petro, who was mayor of Bogota between 2012 and 2015, is well known but held back by a generally negative perception of him.
Some 56% of polled voters have a negative perception of the outspoken socialist against 40% who see him favorably.
This is reversed in the case of Fajardo, who has evaded public scrutiny of his tenure as mayor of Medellin and governor of the Antioquia province and, unlike Petro, has avoided talking policy.
According to Datexco, the dynasty politician from Medellin has a favorable public image, but more than 20% of voters do not know who he is.
Clara Lopez seems to have both. More than 86% of voters said they knew the Bogota dynasty politician and more than 56% said to perceive herself positively.
However, it seems that Fajardo and Lopez are restrained by their failure to formulate concrete election proposals while too engaged in pushing their individual dynasties’ political agenda.