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HomeCosta RicaUCR Study Finds Declining Support for Costa Rica's President

UCR Study Finds Declining Support for Costa Rica’s President

A recent survey by the University of Costa Rica (UCR) indicates that while President Chaves still enjoys significant support, there’s a noticeable decline, particularly in coastal areas.

From April to September, there was a decrease in positive evaluations of President Rodrigo Chaves and his administration, dropping by 7 and 6 percentage points, respectively. Despite this decline, Chaves still holds a high approval rating. Interestingly, the geographical distribution of his supporters appears to be evolving.

The report emphasizes, “there’s a notable dip in positive sentiments towards both the governments and president’s performance since the April survey.”

These insights are part of the most recent findings released by the Center for Research and Political Studies (CIEP) at the University of Costa Rica on Wednesday.

The survey further elaborates, “while 53% of respondents view the government favorably, this is a 7-percentage point drop from April 2023 data. Conversely, both negative and neutral assessments saw a rise of 3 percentage points each.”

Chaves’ personal ratings, when viewed separately from his government, appear more favorable.

With 57% offering a positive personal assessment of Chaves, there’s a decline of 6 percentage points since the last review.

“Even with decreasing support, the president and his administration retain the endorsement of a significant portion of the population,” the study highlights.

Delving into the demographics, the primary supporters of the president seem consistent: predominantly men, with a secondary education, aged between 35 and 54. Alajuela continues to be a robust supportive base for Chaves, but shifts are evident in other regions.

Discussing coastal regions, Guanacaste, once the second most supportive in November, has seen changes by April, with Limón leading, followed by Puntarenas. Currently, these provinces rank lower, and notably, the Caribbean region is the least supportive of Chaves. In contrast, Cartago now exhibits above-average positive opinions.

When respondents were questioned about their changing perspectives over the past year regarding President Chaves, the findings were intriguing.

“37% acknowledged a shift in their stance on the president’s performance from their views a year ago, but a significant 63% remained unwavering. Of those who noted a change, 54% perceived improvements, while 46% had growing reservations,” as per the survey.

Lastly, the survey highlighted a crucial point, which is why President Chaves’ image deteriorated.

“People whose opinion about the governmental management worsened mainly attribute this perception to reasons related to Rodrigo Chaves’ personality (31% of the people), pointing out that he is “dishonest,” “corrupt,” “authoritarian,” lacks credibility,” and “does not inspire trust,” the survey determined.

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