Gallup poll shows Park’s rating dips below 30%

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Gallup poll shows Park’s rating dips below 30%

President Park Geun-hye’s plummeting approval rating dropped to another record low Friday, with just 29 percent of respondents showing support for her performance, according to the most recent poll conducted by Gallup Korea.

Park’s approval rating for the fourth week of January dropped 1 percentage point compared to last week, according to the poll.

For the past three weeks, the president has continued to hit a record low in her approval rating since she took office in February 2013.

But this is the first time that Park’s support has dip below 30 percent in Gallup’s weekly poll.

In comparison, the president had a 40 percent approval rating in the first week of January.

In the polls conducted via phone interviews with 1,009 adults nationwide between Tuesday and Thursday, 63 percent disapproved of the president while 8 percent did not respond.

It is rare for a president just entering a third year in office to see his or her approval rating fall below 30 percent.

“Insufficient communication” and “problems with the revised tax settlement plan” tied as the top reasons for disapproval of Park - at 16 percent each - for respondents who said they were not content with how the president was doing her job. Another 14 percent who disapproved of Park listed “problems with reshuffling of [Blue House] personnel” as a reason for their dissatisfaction.

Last Friday, the president nominated Lee Wan-koo, former floor leader of the ruling Saenuri Party, for the prime minister position and also reinstituted an old system of presidential advisers. But the move did little to assuage public demand for a major staff and cabinet reshuffle following a Blue House influence-peddling scandal, previous botched appointment attempts and an embarrassing rise in year-end tax bills for many middle-class Koreans.

Park generally had less than 20 percent approval from people in their 40s, and her most staunch supporters are conservatives in their 60s. She recorded a 23 percent approval rating in Seoul.

Regarding support for prime minister candidate Lee, 39 percent said he is suited for the job, according to the survey, while 20 percent said he is not suitable.

BY SARAH KIM [sarahkim@joongang.co.kr]


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