2019.10.21 10:26

Nausėda consolidates position as most popular politician in Lithuania – survey

Šarūnas Sabaitis, BNS2019.10.21 10:26

Lithuanian President Gitanas Nausėda further consolidated his position as the most popular politician in the country in October, according to the latest survey by the Vilmorus pollster for the Lietuvos Rytas daily.

The popularity of Lithuania's European Commissioner-designate Virginijus Sinkevičius increased considerably over a month. Meanwhile, the Kaunas and Vilnius mayors saw their popularities rating slump down even further.

82.5 percent of the people surveyed in October had a favorable opinion about the president, compared to 79.3 percent in September.

"Only 3.3 percent have a negative opinion about [Nausėda]. It’s a very good result and similar to the one Valdas Adamkus had after winning the presidential election in 1998," Vladas Gaidys, head of Vilmorus, told BNS.

Prime Minister Saulius Skvernelis rose to the second place, despite his rating decreasing slightly to 50.1 percent, from 51 percent in September.

Meanwhile, Visvaldas Matijošaitis, mayor of Lithuania's second-largest city of Kaunas, plunged from the second position to the sixth, his apporval down by more than 8 points to 43.3 percent.

Foreign Minister Linas Linkevičius came in third with 49.6 percent (48.6 percent in September), followed by Sinkevičius whose rating rose by almost 10 percentage points from 39.8 percent in September to 49.5 percent in October.

"Without a doubt, it has to do with Sinkevičius' designation as a European Commissioner. This process was widely covered. He's a young, determined [...] politician one could hardly reproach," Gaidys explained.

Speaker of the Seimas Viktoras Pranckietis came in fifth, increasing his popularity from 45.7 to 49.4 percent.

Vilnius Mayor Remigijus Šimašius saw his rating drop further in October, with the percentage of people having a positive opinion about him going down from 26.5 percent in September to 22.7 percent in October.

Read more: Political fallout continues after protesters reinstall Noreika plaque

Gaidys told BNS the drop in Šimašius' rating, which stood at 34 percent in July, is related to the removal of the memorial plaque to Jonas Noreika, also known as Generolas Vėtra (General Storm), a controversial figure in Lithuania.

The survey of 1,020 people was carried out on October 4-13.

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