Posted : 2014-04-28 16:55
Updated : 2014-04-28 22:33

Park's approval ratings slip steeply

By Chung Min-uck

President Park Geun-hye has seen her popularity ratings slide due to the government's incompetent handling of the sinking of the ferry Sewol, which is feared to claim more than 300 lives.

According to Realmeter, a local pollster, President Park received an average approval rating of 57.9 percent last week, a drop of 6.8 percentage points from a week earlier.

Park's average approval rating for the week when the tragic accident occurred stood at 64.7 percent.

Realmeter said Park's numbers have never fallen below 60 percent since March, indicating a serious setback.

Marking one of the deadliest maritime accidents in Korean history, 174 were rescued on the day the Sewol sank while 189 have been confirmed dead.

Originally, 476 passengers, mostly high school students, were onboard.

Public atmosphere of grief following the accident has partially turned into anger against the government for its slow and incompetent handling of the sinking.

The disaster also revealed problems within the government's oversight of safety practices and communication between different branches.

"People's discontent over the government has grown following the time-consuming rescue efforts, which led to the big drop in the approval rating," explained the pollster.

Analyzing on a daily basis, Park's approval rating once rose to over 70 percent when she met with the victims of the disaster on April 18, but experienced a gradual decrease scoring 56.6 percent on April 25.

"The reason why Park's popularity rating increased to 70 percent was because of people's expectations for a swift rescue," said Realmeter CEO Lee Taek-soo, Monday. "But government's moves failed to meet the expectations and the rating soon started to fall."

Meanwhile, speculation has arisen that Park may make an official apology for the mishandling of the disaster.

Chung Hong-won, Park's first prime minister, offered to step down Sunday, holding himself responsible and apologizing for the disaster.

관련 한글 기사

'세월호 여파' 당·청 지지율 동반하락…野 1.2%p↑

리얼미터 주간조사…새누리 48.7%, 새정치연합 28.1%
朴대통령 지지율 64.7%→57.9%…6.8%p 하락

세월호 참사 여파로 박근혜 대통령과 집권여당인 새누리당에 대한 지지율은 빠지고, 새정치민주연합에 대한 지지율은 소폭 반등한 것으로 나타났다.

여론조사 전문기관인 리얼미터는 지난 21~25일 전국 19세 이상 유권자 2천520명을 대상으로 실시한 주간 정례 여론조사에서 새누리당에 대한 지지율은 1주 전의 53.4%에서 4.7%포인트 하락한 48.7%를 기록했다고 28일 밝혔다.

같은 기간 새정치민주연합에 대한 지지율은 26.9%에서 1.2%포인트 상승한 28.1%로 나타났다. 이는 리얼미터 조사에서 합당 선언 이후 6주 연속 하락하다 처음으로 반등한 것이다.

이에 따라 새누리당과 새정치민주연합의 지지율 격차는 20.6%포인트로 5.9%포인트 줄었다.

박근혜 대통령에 대한 지지율은 57.9%를 기록해 1주 전의 64.7%보다 6.8%포인트 하락했다. 리얼미터는 박 대통령의 지지율이 진도 방문 직후인 18일에는 71%까지 상승했다고 밝힌 바 있다.

박 대통령이 '국정수행을 잘못하고 있다'는 부정적 평가는 6.6%포인트 상승한 33.8%를 기록했다.

리얼미터는 '세월호 사고수습이 장기화하면서 정부의 위기관리 능력에 대한 국민의 불만이 커져 (박 대통령과 여당에 대한) 지지율이 하락한 것으로 나타났다'고 평가했다.

이번 여론조사는 휴대전화(30%)와 유선전화(70%) 임의번호걸기(RDD) 방식으로 진행됐다. 신뢰수준은 95%, 표본오차는 ±2.0%포인트다. (연합뉴스)

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