According to pollster Ipsos Napolean Franco, Colombia’s President Juan Manuel Santos faces his lowest approval ratings and reelection hopes since taking the office in August 2010. Radical Change party leader, German Vargas, leads the polls.
The latest Ipsos poll for radio station RCN and newspaper La Semana, released Wednesday, shows that in a survey of over 1,000 citizens spanning across 13 cities, the percentage of respondents supporting President Santos’ reelection has shrunk to just 19%. This concurs with the poll released by pollster Datexco earlier this month that reported the President’s reelection chances were an all time low at 17%.
77% of those polled by Ipsos said they would not vote for Santos, and 78% of those polled by Datexco said they would not vote for him either. The 77% of respondents shows an increase from 60% of people who would not vote for Santos in July of this year, and the 19% of those polled has shrunk from 34% in July as well.
This data comes as little surprise as the incumbent’s ratings have plummeted on all fronts especially since nation-wide strikes of multiple industries, including most prominently the agricultural sector, paralyzed Colombia in late August.
Even though presidential candidate for the Radical Change Party, German Vargas Lleras has publicly said that he would work with the sole purpose or reelecting the President’s policies, in a hypothetical race that took place now between the candidates and the incumbent, Vargas would take away 15% of the vote, and Santos just 10%.
In the same hypothetical, former Mayor of Bogota and current president of the leftist Alternative Democratic Pole Party Clara Lopez Obregon, and ex-President Alvaro Uribe‘s Party, the Pure Democratic Center‘s candidate, Francisco Santos Calderon would tie with 7% of the vote. The left We The World Party candidate and career politician, Antonio Navarro Wolff and the rapidly growing Green Party’s and also ex-Mayor of Bogota, Enrique Peñalosa would both come away with 6% of the vote.
A recent Datexco poll showed that in a similar race without Vargas, Santos would be first, followed by Lopez in second, F. Santos in third, and Navarro in fourth with Penaloso in fifth.
Santos’ popularity rating sits at 29%, a full 20 points lower than the reported 49% just three months ago in July. Santos must declare if he officially intends to seek reelection in just under two months. Colombia Reports will be releasing profiles and interviews with the presidential candidates starting this Sunday.