Santa Elena de Uairen, May 11th 2014, (Venezuelanalysis.com) – Two private Venezuelan polling firms, Hinterlaces and Datanalisis, recently released data concerning Venezuelan public opinion in the face of protest-related violence.
According to a Datanalisis poll, 79.5% of Venezuelans believe the country is in a negative situation. While this statistic was widely reported throughout private and international media, the more in-depth questions of Hinterlaces’ poll took a wider look at the perceived negativity.
After questioning 350 inhabitants of Chacao, a wealthy central district of Caracas, Hinterlaces concluded that 73% reject the violent street barricades in the area as an instrument for protest. 78% of this same group believe that those responsible for the violence should be held accountable for their actions and consequently sanctioned by authorities.
Very similar results were received in the middle class residential Caracas municipality of Baruta.
44% of those questioned in Baruta by Hinterlaces consider the economy to be the gravest problem at hand, though 70% believe that a forceful removal of the democratically elected president, Nicolas Maduro, would cause greater economic strife. Additionally, a large minority, 40%, were doubtful that the current dialogue organized between the government and opposition leadership would lead to any solutions.
In a larger national poll of 1200 people conducted last week, Hinterlaces found that general approval for the Maduro government has risen by one point since April, now reaching 52%.
However the Datanalisis poll of 1300 Venezuelans in April conflicted with this, suggesting that 40.8% approve of the president’s performance, and that a 65% majority believe the Maduro government to be “unstable”.
Well known journalist Jose Vicente Rangel summed up the polls’ findings in an interview with public television broadcaster VTV yesterday evening.
“The Venezuelan people want change, in the form of renovation and rectification, more than a change in [government] model or of president.” he said.
The “weakest point” of the government appears to be Maduro’s economic performance, Rangel noted, since many of those surveyed expressed dissatisfaction in that regard.
On a mass scale, the political analyst concluded, worry and discontent are prevalent, as well as a collective desire to renovate and seek solutions. Extreme emotions, he noted, such as fury and fatalist repudiation, are not widespread.