Polls: Majority Of Ukrainians Against President Dissolving

KIEV, Ukraine -- The majority of Ukrainians oppose calls for President Viktor Yushchenko to dissolve parliament and order new elections, according to opinion polls released on July 17 - results likely to push the pro-Western leader closer to accepting the parliamentary coalition led by his former Orange Revolution rival.

Viktor Yushchenko

Viktor Yanukovych, whom Yushchenko defeated in a court-ordered presidential revote in 2004, outmaneuvered his pro-Western rivals to put together a new, parliamentary majority last week comprised of eastern Ukrainian industrialists, Communists and Socialists. The coalition has nominated Yanukovych to be the next prime minister.

Some of Yushchenko's allies have appealed to the president to dissolve parliament and call new elections in a bid to keep the pro-Russian politician out. They have warned that any other option would mean a betrayal of the 2004 mass protests that helped strip Yanukovych of his fraud-marred presidential victory and usher Yushchenko into power.

Yushchenko, however, has appeared reluctant - and opinion polls suggest that if he did dissolve parliament, his party would take an even worse beating than it did in the March vote, when it came in third.

Under Ukraine's constitution, Yushchenko gains the right to dissolve parliament as of July 25 if no new government can be formed. For parliament to form a government, Yushchenko must agree to submit Yanukovych's nomination for the premiership.

A series of opinion polls, released over the weekend and July 17, found that most Ukrainians want to see parliament - which has not worked effectively since the March 26 election - get back to work. The polls suggested this nation of 47 million favors compromise.

Some 54 percent of Ukrainians polled by Kyiv's International Institute of Sociology oppose dissolving parliament, while 26 percent support such a move. The poll of 2,095 Ukrainians, which was released July 17, was conducted from July 10-14 and had a margin of error of 2.2 percentage points.

A separate poll of 1,500 Ukrainians by FOM-Ukraine released the same day indicated that only one-fifth of Ukrainians support dissolving parliament, the Interfax Ukraine news agency reported. The majority want Yushchenko to seek

compromise or unite his party with the newly formed coalition. The poll was conducted July 13 and had a margin of error of 2.6 percentage points.

A third poll by the Sofiya Center for Social Research found that 48.4 percent thought a Yanukovych premiership would be "largely negative," and 44.7 percent thought it would be "largely positive." But out of a list of 10 possible candidates, Yanukovych had the highest positive rating, and the lowest negative rating. That poll, released July 17, quizzed 2,022 Ukrainians, which had a margin of error of 2.2 percent, was conducted from July 3-11.

Meanwhile, Yanukovych's Party of Regions said talks were still under way with Yushchenko's bloc in a bid to persuade it to join the coalition. Parliament Speaker Oleksandr Moroz, whose decision to abandon his former Orange Revolution allies led to the creation of the new parliamentary coalition, predicted on July 17 that the most likely outcome would be "to sign an agreement on cooperation."

Source: AP

Comments

Anonymous said…
Yushchenko had everything in the palms of his hands, and he blew it...

History will judge him as a weak leader, who was not able to make a decision.