[FULL DATA] Abela trust skyrockets, Delia registers lowest trust rating ever

A strategy in disarray: the trust figures that spell bad news for the PN

Robert Abela has scored an impressive 62.5% on the trust barometer in the first MaltaToday survey since he became prime minister three weeks ago.

The Prime Minister’s trust rating is the highest ever achieved by any party leader, putting him a massive 49 points ahead of his rival, Adrian Delia.

The Opposition leader registered a dismal 13.5%, his lowest trust rating in two years.

Abela trumps Delia comfortably among women and men, across all age groups, and in all regions.

He achieves this result despite jitters among Labour voters on three key issues that have characterised Abela’s first weeks at the helm – the resignations of the police commissioner and Justyne Caruana, and the order to stop clearing flowers from Daphne Caruana Galizia’s memorial.

Significantly, Abela enjoys the trust of 22.5% of those who voted for the Nationalist Party in the 2017 general election, just 10 points shy of Delia’s performance among his own supporters.

The gap between the leaders is particularly pronounced among younger voters with Abela securing the trust of 64.6% of those aged between 18 and 35, as opposed to Delia’s 9.4%.

Abela’s ‘worst’ performance is among those aged 65 and over, where he still manages a trust rating of 58.9%. This coincides with Delia’s best performance – the Opposition leader secures the trust of 20.9% of those aged 65+.

The Prime Minister registers absolute majorities in all regions with his best performance being in the South East where he scores 76.2%.

Abela’s lowest trust rating is in the Western region, where he registers a trust rating of 51.3%.

In Gozo, once a PN stronghold, Abela notches up 62.3% and secures an equally impressive 61.4% in the traditional PN-leaning Northern Harbour region.

Delia’s best performance is in the Northern Harbour where he hits 19.4%. His lowest trust rating is in the South-Eastern region, where he scrapes a lowly 4.4%, while in Gozo, Delia registers 8.3%.

The figures suggest that Abela has managed to win over hearts and minds in his first few weeks at the helm of the Labour Party and the country. His trust rating has even superseded Joseph Muscat’s, who won the trust battles against his political rivals Lawrence Gonzi, Simon Busuttil and Adrian Delia.

The Prime Minister’s trust rating is further bolstered by his own party’s improved performance after it started to slide over the past three months.

On the flipside, the results spell trouble for Delia, who has failed to capitalise on the political turmoil of recent weeks. His trust rating is a major setback at a time when the PN is trying to regroup and reform.

Labour Party bounces back after end of year doldrums

The Labour Party has woken up from its slumber with a MaltaToday survey putting its support at 49.2%.

The result signals an almost eight-point jump since the last survey in December, reversing the PL’s slow decline since October.

This is the first survey carried out by MaltaToday since Robert Abela became Labour leader and prime minister.

The PL’s upward movement comes at the expense of the Nationalist Party that experienced a decline of almost six points since December.

The PN registered 23.8%, down from 29.5% at the end of last year. The result is a reversal of fortunes for the Opposition that had seen its support grow gradually since October.

The PL trumps the PN across all age groups, all regions and among men and women.

Breaking down the results by political allegiance on the basis of how people voted in the last general election, the figures show the PL retaining 90% of the vote and the PN holding on to 60% of its 2017 vote.

Significantly, 4.7% of those who voted PN in 2017, say they will now vote Labour, while 1% of PL voters say they will now shift to the PN.

The PN appears to be struck by lethargy with 22.9% of those who voted for it saying they are uncertain who to vote for if an election is held tomorrow, and 9.3% will not vote.

Only 0.6% of PL voters are uncertain and 2% say they will not vote.

The PL enjoys the support of 45.2% of those aged between 18 and 35, against the PN’s 12.9%.

The PN’s best showing is among pensioners where it registers 33.9% but still trails the PL, which scores 52.7%.

On a regional basis, the PL’s best showing is in the South-Eastern region with 66.3%, followed by the Southern Harbour region with 62%.

Its worst showing is in Gozo with 32.7%, although it still comes in front of the PN, which scores 26.1%. Gozo has the largest cohort of voters who are uncertain (32.5%).

The PN’s best showing is in the Northern Harbour region with 29.9%, followed by the Western region with 26.5%.

A strategy in disarray: the trust figures that spell bad news for the PN

Adrian Delia had pinned his hopes of revival on a change in leader in the Labour Party but survey results suggest the strategy has backfired.

The Nationalist Party leader has always trailed miserably in trust ratings when compared to his previous rival, Joseph Muscat. The former Labour leader was considered unassailable.

Delia’s closest aides believed that when Muscat moved out of the picture, a modicum of competitiveness would return to the political race.

But MaltaToday’s trust barometer released today, the first since Robert Abela became prime minister, puts paid to the PN’s hopes of recovery on the back of Muscat’s exit.

Delia’s trust rating has now plummeted to its lowest in two years and the PN has lost the ground it gained over the past three months.

The numbers also suggest the Nationalist electorate is in disarray with Abela making significant inroads among those who voted PN in the last general election.

A look at the survey numbers shows that Delia could only muster the trust of 34% of those who voted PN in 2017. This contrasts with Abela’s showing among Labour voters, where the Prime Minister secures the support of 95.5%.

Delia’s poor showing among PN voters is nothing new – he has registered similar showings over the past two years.

But what should be a worrying factor for him and the PN is Abela’s ability to appeal to Nationalist voters.

Abela’s trust rating among those who voted PN in 2017 stands at 22.5%, which is an impressive result that not even Muscat managed to achieve.

This puts Abela 10 points shy of the PN leader among Nationalist voters, a situation that none of Delia’s aides were foreseeing.

The rest of PN voters were either uncertain who to trust (32.6%), or trusted none of the two main leaders (10.9%).

The change in PL leader and its impact on the party and the electorate will have to be gauged over a period of months but the first results do not bode well for the PN and its leader.

Methodology

The survey was carried out between Tuesday 21 January and Tuesday 28 January. 655 respondents opted to complete the survey. Stratified random sampling based on gender, region and age was used to replicate the Maltese demographics. The estimated margin of error is 5% for a confidence interval of 95%. Demographic and sub-group breakdowns have a larger margin of error.

This article was updated on 5 February 8:45am to include the survey methodology which was mistakenly excluded from the original article.

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