Poll: Support for Abbas Lower Than Ever

YERUSHALAYIM -

A newly released poll shows that support for Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas has continued to wane, and that a solid majority want to see him go, The Jerusalem Post reported on Wednesday.

The poll, conducted by the Palestinian Center for Policy and Survey Research (PCPSR),

found that 60 percent of Palestinians think he should resign, and only a little more than a third want the 83-year-old Abbas to stay on. The figures reflect Abbas’s lowest popularity rating ever.

“The people hold Abbas accountable,” for persistent, widespread corruption, said Abdul Sattar Kassem, former political science professor at An-Najah University.

Kassem argues that bad governing by the PA is to blame for these numbers.
“The authority is its own worst enemy. There is financial corruption, administrative corruption and social issues, injustice to people, high taxes, bullying by PA security.”

The issue of Israeli building demolitions also contribute to his declining support.

Three-quarters of the respondents believe that Abbas has done nothing to follow through on promises to prevent the demolitions in areas under PA control. About 80 percent said they don’t expect any change.

Abbas has ruled since elections in 2005. Although his first term ended in 2009, no elections have been held, undermining his legitimacy.

On other issues, the poll said that nearly two-thirds believe the Palestinian leadership should reject the U.S. peace plan even without seeing the details because it would certainly be bad.

More than 80 percent reject the Ambassador to Israel David Friedman’s suggestion that the Palestinians be granted autonomy instead of an independent and sovereign state, at least at this stage, and over 60 percent support continuing the PA boycott of the U.S. administration.